Star is a Korean pop singer, and she conveys the ideal image of an idol for the nation’s standards. She thrives in dancing, singing and acting. She is the main visual of her group and her objective is to make everyone get swooned by her looks and personality.
A personal project for me as I delve into my own passion in my early adolescent years. It has been almost a decade since I started to induce myself on the popular genre. Korean Pop, especially in the last decade has multiplied in popularity and fans. As I grew older, I understood the complex procedures and behind the scenes of the hard industry.
The passing of the late singer, Jonghyun of SHINee created a new way of me to see the industry. His suicide was a personal journey he decided on his own, but it was a wake up call for many.
It is indeed an industry of perseverance, excellence and perfection. But, to what extent do I support their other values? Does it affect how I view their culture and my own values?
As much as they want to put dreamy, innocent and talented images, there are underlying factors that sculpture K-pop to become the industry it is today.
Putting on a persona as a K -pop idol means putting fans on a pedestal, where they create a persona where they are the fan’s belonging and that they will remain faithful. The whore-virgin juxtaposition also is one part of their persona, in which they have a narrow scope of acceptability and a balance of cute enough to be dreamed about but not hot enough to want to sleep with. Their poses, their actions, their online behavior, their words are articulated carefully in a way that it stays on brand.
Bedazzled with the hyperfeminine poses, Korean pop also create hidden boundaries and restrictions on the definition of an ideal Korean women should be. Their limited acceptability towards skin shades, the acceptability of the shortness of a skirt, their way of talking and walking is a combined effort from the nation’s high standards of beauty and the industry capitalizing on this opportunity.
Photographer – Clara Benecia
Stylist – Clara Benecia
Talent – Alissa F. Thompson
Creative Direction – Clara Benecia
Makeup Artist + Assist – Nabila Menam
Post-production – Clara Benecia, Nabila Menam