Well, last night, a documentary about her premiered in Paris, directed by the young Hugo Lopez. Zahia de Z à A (Zahia from Z to A) follows each step of the creation of her last collection, all the way to the show, and gives us a peek into her candy-colored life.
The cocktail hour prior to the event was a visual feast in itself. It saw a poufy-haired Zahia–a ‘do somewhere between Brigitte Bardot and My Little Pony–dressed head to toe (or should one say, head to mid-thigh) in a Proenza Schouler tweed ensemble. Mind you, that was the most covered up I had ever seen her, as she usually bows at the end of her shows wearing no more than a few strategically placed rose petals.
An impressive amount of A-list French celebrities were present, including actresses Emmanuelle Béart, Béatrice Dalle, and Charlotte Le Bon, and L’Officiel’s editor-in-chief Vanessa Belugeon, clad in leopard print gear. Rodier’s creative director Emilie Luc-Duc also joined, busy from her recent launch of Repetto’s ready to wear line, but looking graceful as always.
As for the film, those looking for juicy gossip will be disappointed. Instead, it rapidly brushes over her controversial past, saying only that she had “a dream for other things.”
Lopez’s intentions are honorable: He attempts to give some substance to someone who has been reduced to a pantomime of a modern-day courtisane. Indeed, her character and clothes are entirely built around the idea of injecting ultra-sexy, stripper-referenced lingerie into daily life. That is still the case of course, but Lopez tries to highlight another side of Zahia, a universe populated by monochrome pink interiors, fluffy dogs, macaroons–and highlight the few traces of candid innocence in the very young woman.
The film is spent following her around her candyfloss apartment, decorated solely in naked photos of herself or marble statues of her torso. As for the generous benefactor allowing her to lead this life, little is mentioned except that she is receiving “support from a Chinese investor.”
While the documentary may not paint the most touching portrait of the young woman, it’s certainly a fascinating one.