We know a lot of really extraordinary women. It's just a fact. We have grown up surrounded by some truly fabulous females. Naturally, we want to learn as much as we can from of all of these amazing, inspiring ladies, so we thought we'd start a series of interviews! We're really excited about it because we have a long list of really special people we want to introduce you to and who we want to learn from. We're so excited for you to get to know them!
Up first in our Fab Females series is... Nesrine Mil. Nesrine is a young artist from Nice, France and she's also our first cousin! Just as a note, most of these interviews will be featuring non-family members, but Nesrine is an extremely talented young woman who is following her dreams. What we admire the most about her is the fact that she is fiercely pursuing her artistic passions without looking back and without apologizing for it. We love her dearly, she makes us cooler just by association, she has crazy amazing hair, and we couldn't resist the opportunity to pick her brain a little bit. So everybody, please meet Nesrine!
What do you do and how do you do it?
I'm currently in art school, which we call "les beaux arts" here. Photography was what first brought my interest to the arts and that’s the reason why I got into preparatory art school before that. There I discovered sculpture and that has been a recurrent medium in my expression. I mostly use plaster because the feeling of working it makes me so happy... even if that means being completely dirty from head to toe! We also have wood and metal studios so I've been experiencing that recently.
Here is some of her recent work (see more throughout the post):
What motivates you to get up out of bed in the morning and take on the world?
It's usually school and the fact that I just can't miss a day or I'm gonna miss something important and be late on my work, otherwise I'll just sleep in all day until I'm hungry (really hungry).
How do you get through times when you feel uninspired and unmotivated?
I like to think I'm a pretty wise human being. I also like to think everything is temporary and the most important thing in life is balance so it's okey to go through rough times... but the truth is when that happens I just hate myself with all my energy and that makes time goes by faster until I feel better.
The tortured artist — we get that. And we appreciate the honesty. It's refreshing to be able to recognize and even appreciate the negative sometimes.
What’s the best piece of advice you ever received and from whom did you receive it?
It was probably from your mom actually. (Hi mom!) She believed in my artistry way before I did and she told me to follow my calling against everything. I will always be grateful towards her for that!
What’s the best piece of advice you want to give out to other women who are out there going after their dreams?
Things don't always happen the way you want them to and that’s okay. There's probably not one road to your dream so have an open mind and an open heart cause every experience will help you even if you don't think it will. Work won't ever deceive you, so practice, practice, practice until you get there!
Who is your role model/icon and why?
It's cliché but it's mainly women artists originally from the eastern world like Mona Hatoum, Shirin Neshat... the type of women who can express their concerns, their struggles, their joys to the whole world without turning it into a stereotypical translation and also make your body hair raise at the same time.
What insecurities do you have and how do you move past them?
I think not being enough has always been one of my insecurities, but being able to be honest with myself and accepting the good but also the bad helps. I don't need to be this perfect person and I cannot possibly be that. The parts you least like about yourself are probably the reasons behind some of your better parts, and that’s something to be proud of!
Where would you like to see yourself in 10 years?
Hopefully I will be a working artist, having enough money for rent, food and to buy badass materials like latex and wax for sculptures. I'll probably have to leave my chill south of France for that, but if I'm thrilled by my work and my family is healthy, then that's all I can wish for.
Wow, that gives us a lot to think about. Now for some lighter stuff!
Three things in your purse you can’t live without?
Honestly my bag is just filled with cookies and cakes, it even opens up sometimes and makes the 2 other things in my bag dirty which means a chocolate covered pen to write on a chocolate covered notebook my ideas for art work, or a sentence from a book that touched me « where hands couldn’t » (like that one)...
It's your last day on earth. What meal would you eat? Describe in detail. :)
I’ll definitely start with bread and cheese, french of course cause America YOU’RE DOING EVERYTHING WRONG! I’ll have some goat tomme on a baguette with fig jam. Then I’ll have a huge plate with dishes from various parts of the world like tomatoes « à la provençale », some socca (traditional nissart dish from my hometown Nice), nachos, bourraks, hummus, a cheese nan and sushi. And I’ll end with almond butter on a banana. In this perfect world in which I get to choose my last meal before dying, then I also get to have a big enough stomach to keep everything in and not throw up!
YUM. Currently reading?
The Enigma of Arrival by V.S Naipaul. I was reading this interview with Joan Mitchell and she talked about it for whatever reason and it was just the most beautiful thing I had read in a long time so I bought it.
Currently listening to?
Branko — Let Me Go (Feat. Nonku Phiri & Mr. Carmack)
The L word, I wanna kill Jenny so bad (or just lock her in a box with food and water)!
Last dream you remember having?
I actually don’t remember my dreams but I had a sleep paralysis a few weeks ago. It means you’re dreaming with "open eyes", you’re hallucinating and you see and hear things but cannot do anything other than move your eyes and it’s usually something really scary...
"Whatever it is you're seeking won't come in the form you're expecting." — Haruki Murakami
Thank you, Nesrine! You're the coolest.