Friday, November 20, 2009

Kim Daul Gone

By now you have probably heard that Korean fashion model Kim Daul was found dead in her apartment in Paris on Thursday, Nov. 19.

Daul was just 20 years old, but had been a top model for three years or so. She was also known for a big and quirky personality, as evidenced in this cool mini-interview at Test Magazine. I think you get a sense of what she was like in this photo shoot, too.

She also bared that quirkiness often on her blog I Like to Fork Myself. I had been following it for a couple of years, reading it irregularly, but nearly always loving it when I did. She talked a lot of music and modeling, of course, but also about her loves, like collecting cutlery, schlocky horror films, cereal and guinea pigs. She also had a great post when she told Korean netizens who were on her case for doing some nude pictures to shut up.

And then there were posts like this one (one of her first):

my life as daul was so miserable and lonely.
please join my loneliness in another world.

Sure, she adds "just kidding" a few lines later. And one does not want to overly psychoanalyze a blog. But still...

And then there was this post:

and thanks to stupid tv show from korea ppl think i like to
torture myself and thanks to that im getting lots and lots of
suicide emails on a daily basis
but im definately not depressed, and i dont want to killmyself

And more recently, here:

freedom comes with such cost.

but is it even freedom?

one could get numb living like this. pretty things. comfort. vanity. decadent nights to make up for losses.

but this endless loneliness

there must be something wrong from the core.

i worry as i take the courage to sleep

I remember thinking about a month ago how her blog had gotten wordier recently, like there was something she was trying to figure out, or something that was on her mind, eating at her.

Here is a picture of Daul at 5 years old:

Korea has had a much-discussed problem with celebrity suicides for a while (something I have avoided discussing, because I find the whole subject somewhat lurid and distasteful). But I did not know that modeling in general also has been wrestling with a similar problem (at least according to stories like this one). Regardless of the cause, suicide is always such a waste. But if Daul was suffering from mental health issues, it would be a shame that she did not get the help she needed. In general, I wish people were more aware of mental health and willing to get help when they needed it (or encourage their friends who need it to get help).

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