NYC art-school models: Kiani

Nude and interviewed.

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  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

Photograph: Marielle Solan

How did you get into modeling?
I originally came to New York from San Juan, Puerto Rico to train with Alvin Ailey, but I got a knee injury because I was doing that from 9am to 4pm, and then waitressing from 5pm to 2am! Modeling was a way to make good money and not get injured in an environment that I really liked. And I've always been involved with art.

Do you take a particular approach to the job?
Well, I've been on the other side in drawing class, so when I started modeling, I tried to think from the artists' perspective, you know, Is this a difficult pose, or a good angle? Would I like to draw this position myself?

Has there ever been a situation where modeling nude made you feel uncomfortable?
Only when I posed at NYU. They didn't have heaters, which was a hard for me because—I mean, I'm from Puerto Rico, right? I don't pose at NYU anymore.

Are there any downsides to the job for you?
Well, I love nude modeling, but every day, from like 9 in the morning to 4? It's intense because you're immobile for all that time. So I would just say a maximum of three times a week is plenty!

What's the most embarrassing thing that's ever happened to you?
I once modeled for a sculpting class, and I had to stand on this little podium that turned while all the artists sat around me in a circle, which was kind of freaky, right there. But I also have this condition that if my period is late, it's like a catastrophe: I puke, I feel light-headed, I get hot flashes—like I'm pregnant or something, though I'm not. So on this particular day, I'm feeling really bloated, and I'm on this podium turning around and around in circles. And then I began to flip out, because all the sculptures around me looked like they had huge boobs. And being a dancer, I'm thinking, I hate having huge boobs! And that's when I fainted, in front of the whole class, naked!

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3 comments
Don O
Don O

Kiani, just saw your interview. I am an award winning playwright and have a script that I'd like you to take a look at. The role is a gypsy dancer during WWII. She is a Nazi collaborator to stay out of the death camp. She enlists young Jewish boy to take a message to her family. Both they and them boy are in the same death camp. I expect this script to be done in a John Chatterton festival ..probably over this summer. I'd like you to consider playing the Gypsy, but of course you should look over the script first. Google me at Don Orwald playwright and read about some of my work.

Diana
Diana

Kiani is a beautiful subject and as an art student I appreciate her beauty and perfect form. Thank you