Meet Suzi Leenaars, the Oddball Model Messing With Our Feeds

This article originally appeared on i-D Asia and UK
Photo: Daniel King 

The first thing that strikes you about model Suzi Leenaars — her digital presence at least — is her subversive sense of humour. Her Instagram is a visual tribute to life’s stranger moments, like a kid lying in a supermarket with a plunger on his face or a couple with their absurdly personalised luggage. And, of course, there’s also a healthy dose of toilet humour. “Instagram for me is just a kind of diary rather than a portfolio,” Suzi tells us. “As a model you’re always seen through other people’s lens so it’s nice to show my point of view.”

It’s a refreshingly alternative perspective compared to the hyper-curated lives that we’re used to seeing online. But that doesn’t mean the Sydney-born, London-based model is trying to comment on narcissism or self-branding. “I just share the things that I like, that’s all there is to it, really,” she explains. “My favourite thing to do, especially in a new city, is to just walk around alone and go to the supermarket and look at things.”

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Maddy Madden on ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ and Representation

This article originally appeared on doingbird Magazine
Photo: Max Doyle 

You can learn a lot about a person from their favourite television show. Madeleine Madden’s is RuPaul’s Drag Race—a ridiculous, beautiful, important, and fucking hilarious mess of a show. “A lot of people on that show have experienced extreme trauma and are turning that into art, and turning themselves into art,” Madden says. “That’s something that I love to see, and hope to do as well.”

Whether she knows it or not, Madden has been doing this for years. The healing power of storytelling is the invisible driving force behind her acting and her activism. At the typically awkward age of 13, when the biggest challenge facing most kids is figuring out which flavour of Impulse body spray represents their personality best, Madden asked the entire Nation to close the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people. Her message was broadcast on free to air television by GenerationOne as part of a campaign to achieve parity for Indigenous Australians.

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Why Are Australians Obsessed with Tourist Merch?

This article originally appeared on i-D Magazine.
Photo: Chloe Hill

One of the most embarrassing moments of my life centres on a dress that I bought in Bali. Me: a seven-year-old girl with a frangipani behind her ear and the world at her feet. The dress: a pink denim mini covered in white hibiscus flowers. I wore it on my flight home from Australia’s favourite holiday destination, Kuta Beach. On the plane, an air hostess spilled a flute of Champagne all over it and I was forced to wear a blanket for the rest of the flight.

Even after this experience, my Bali dress remained special to me. It reminded me of happier times and showed my peers that I was a well-travelled woman. This appreciation for tourist merchandise has stayed with me to this day. My wardrobe is mostly made up of novelty t-shirts and tropical prints. Some of these souvenirs come from far-off places like Japan or Hawaii, while others were sourced much closer to home — Koala t-shirts, Ken Done prints and ‘Sydney, Australia’ hoodies.

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Fast Food with Chloe Wise

This article originally appeared in Oyster Magazine issue #110.
Photo: Logan Jackson
Artwork: Chloe Wise

If there’s one thing in life guaranteed to make you forget your troubles, it’s a Friday night trip to Pizza Hut for the all‐you‐can‐eat buffet. I can still hear the bowls of neon‐coloured jelly, half‐melted ice cream, and too‐hard mini marshmallows calling from the more joyful recesses of my youth.

Artist Chloe Wise’s childhood trips to the Hut were, arguably, slightly more sophisticated. Despite the gastronomical delights of a fast food smorgasbord that would surely distract most other children, Wise and her mother would take time between mouthfuls to make art.

“We’d go to Pizza Hut and we’d be drawing on the napkin together,” she says. “Like, portraits of each other.”

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Romance Was Born and Linda Jackson: An Australian Love Story

This article originally appeared in Oyster Magazine issue #107.
Photo: Bowen Arico

During the making of this issue we’ve talked to a lot of people about what romance means to them and, unsurprisingly, most have told us it has nothing to do with romantic love. Not to deny the artistic power of masterworks like You’ve Got Mail and Love Actually, but the best love stories often have nothing to do with finding your soulmate. This sentiment couldn’t hold truer for a label that was founded on romantic ideals and has grown to represent so much more.

Continue reading “Romance Was Born and Linda Jackson: An Australian Love Story”