In “Power Players”, fashion change makers tell Bustle how they are pushing boundaries and advancing culture, whether they are advocating sustainability, bringing more inclusiveness to the runway or making leaps and bounds in technology and culture. innovation. Here, choreographer Parris Goebel discusses representation, brand authenticity and beauty standards in the industry.
Parris Goebel is “that whore”. It’s the only label that adequately complies with her impressive list of hits. At age 30, Goebel is the genius behind Jennifer Lopez’s Super Bowl 2020 halftime performance, Rihanna Savage x Fenty’s many shows, and Justin Bieber’s viral music video “Sorry”, to name a few. . Although she has already added some of the most sought after celebrity names to her portfolio, Goebel is not content with staying in her ward. Instead, she is making great strides in the fashion industry.
One of her many goals is to undo the narrow standards of beauty that have long plagued the fashion world. Taking space in an industry that previously did not welcome creatives as diverse as her, Goebel recently entered into a partnership with UGG, as a brand ambassador and model for the famous footwear brand. Through this new venture, she hopes to normalize Polynesian patterns while also helping dancers be seen as artists and visionaries that they are.
Later, Goebel talks to Bustle about his plans to change the world, from the music industry to fashion and beyond.
Why did you decide to move from choreography to modeling?
Everything I do within dance already has such a fashion look, so it just felt organic. But for me, what is really important is representation, in the sense of being New Zealander, being a Polynesian woman and taking up space in the fashion world as a Polynesian woman. Put myself in places where I didn’t see [people like myself] when I was a little girl it’s so important to me, because I know that another Polynesian girl in New Zealand will see me and know she can too.
What do you hope to achieve in the world of modeling?
Change the stereotype of dancers. I feel like we’re not really celebrated in the fashion world, because we’re only seen as dancers who should only be in music videos and award shows. The problem is breaking down those walls. Dancers should be seen in the fashion world, at fashion shows and on the runways.
How does it feel to see yourself on billboards now?
I feel just like that bitch! Not seeing you, growing up, in those places and being the person who helps make that change, just makes me emotional. I’m just doing my little part in the story. I’ve worked very hard, so in other ways it’s like me should be there. I just feel proud and for me it’s just the beginning.
How do you select the brands to work with?
With whoever you collaborate, it must be a true collaboration. It has to be a brand that understands me, what I bring to the table and what I stand for. I simply will not work with anyone who does not feel in line with my beliefs or who I am as a woman. Working with UGG was great, because it was a real collaboration. In a way they gave me the freedom to do what I wanted: from the choice of choreography, to the choice of music, to the casting of the dancers. These are my favorite types of collaboration – you don’t get put in a box, you’re told to just be yourself and express yourself.
At this point, how do you feel about the future of the fashion industry?
There is still a lot of work to be done. The really cool thing is that, as women, I feel like we’re programmed [with] many restrictions. We have been told for so long what is beautiful and what we should look like. It’s sad enough to think [of] how I saw myself years ago, compared to how I see myself now – it’s so drastic. Our generation is undoing all of this now and it takes a lot of work. It’s a frustrating process and I think it’s at least taking a step in the right direction. Brands are starting to listen and starting to put diversity at the fore.
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