Monday, 10 September 2012

Queen Viktoria

[Image from The Times]

If you’ve been following the Paralympics this month I’m sure you’ll agree that they have been a source of inspiration. Not only have the games proved that, no matter what, humanity is limitless; they have served as a platform for raising awareness about disabilities. They are a symbol of determination and commitment. Every Paralympian who has taken part is a role-model, supporting the Olympic Committee’s motto: Inspire a generation.

However, it’s not just Paralympians who have defied physical hindrances. At last night’s closing ceremony, the world caught a glimpse of one of pop’s  “bravest chanteuses”: singer/ songwriter and model Viktoria Modesta. Posing within a cage of ice as a Snow Queen, Latvian-born Modesta continued to do what she is infamous for: challenging our modern perception of altered beauty. In 2007, Viktoria’s leg was amputated after a lifetime of operations and medical complications. At birth she had been pulled out sideways which resulted in the dislocation of her hip. Negligent doctors left her leg in plaster for too long, destroying the nerves and stunting her natural growth. From birth to adolescence, Viktoria’s life was dominated by nine intensive operations – on one horrific occasion her heart stopped beating mid-procedure. Talking about her early experience of post-soviet healthcare, Viktoria said “On the whole these operations were a series of terrible medical mistakes in Eastern European hospitals that made the problem worse, instead of better.” After moving to London in 1999, she underwent a voluntary amputation so that she could walk properly: she fought to convince her doctor that would make her happier. Now, instead of hiding her missing limb, Viktoria flaunts it. Consequently, she has become an icon and an inspiration to many.

The combination of her unique features and resilient character contribute to her impressive and statuesque presence: her style is entirely her own – dramatic and provocative, she pushes the boundaries as both a haute-couture and fetish model. Viktoria launched her music career in 2009 and was selected as one of the six best unsigned artists in the UK by Evo Music Rooms on Channel 4. Her recent single ‘Only You’ is an eclectic mix of influences: R&B beats, pop, synth and strings. Hailed as “a breath-takingly modern musician”,and her voice is strong and unusual with a hint of Amy Winehouse and Florence Welch welded to her own sultry tones.

At 24, Viktoria has a name in both the underground fashion and music scenes and on the mainstream stage. Her fundamental principle is “to reach your potential no matter what you’re doing” – an attitude which has undoubtedly been the root of her success. Despite her disability she has proved, like the Paralympian athletes, that any ambition is possible.

'Who's that girl?' post @ Reene Ruin

© Francesca Ebel D-504 blog