Mr. Mathias Bergh
When Mathias Bergh was 19 years old, he was discovered by a model scout who introduced the teenager to a French model agency called Ford Models.
”I didn’t know anything about the fashion industry before this, but after some thought, I went to Paris in connection with men’s fashion week,” he says. ”After running around various castings in Paris for two days, my agent called me and told me that Gucci had heard about me and wanted to meet up. It’s a brand that even a football guy like me knew about, so I was very excited to meet up.” A few hours later Mathias flew from Paris to Florence, Italy, where Gucci’s headquarters are located.
”I remember the driver asking me if we were going to the headquarters. That’s when I began to feel a little nervous. What did Gucci want me to do? If you think about it, at the time I had only done one job as a model. I also remember thinking that I knew more about my favorite football team than about how to pose in front of a camera.”
Sitting in a room in the head office in Florence, Mathias is greeted by two older women with authority. One of the two women were Frida Giannani – Gucci’s Creative Director between 2006-2014 (Frida replaced Tom Ford). ”Frida liked me. In the three-four years that went after that first meeting, she booked me for every shoot they had: Fashion shows, lookbooks, promotions, fittings, store openings, you name it.”
As a junior model who just entered the industry, to get booked by and being able to add Gucci to your portfolio is a massive push to further aid a lucrative career in an industry where companies love models that are seen everywhere. ”I became some kind of supermodel. Assignments for Tom Ford, Prada, Burberry, and H&M were just a few of the things I dedicated my time to. I was ranked as the 5th most successful male model in the world at the time. ”I mean, it’s very honorable and I had a lot of fun,” Mathias says smiling.
He acknowledges that the model industry can be an unpleasant place, but that he never saw that side. ”I didn’t go through what many views as the proper channel to get these big jobs, I sort of just got all of the big assignments early on in my career. I can’t say that I saw any of the dark sides of what this industry has to offer. Although I know about body ideals and all the injustice that’s lingering and hoovering over models in general, and of course it’s very lonely to travel constantly. You live by yourself most of the time and you don’t have any routines.”
After having worked in the industry for 10 years, full time, Mathias felt that it was time for something new. Having been intimate with the industry and having seen how bookings are done with models and creators (photographers, stylists etc), Mathias saw that everything’s done in an old fashioned way.
”It hadn’t [the modeling industry] developed digitally like other industries. It made me want to change that. So I met up with style icon and entrepreneur Emilia de Poret, and we decided to build a digital booking service.”
Mathias and Emelia’s booking service enable customers to be able to book models and creators directly on the platform, which makes every project more time and cost-effective. With our service, we want to give back power to those who deserve it, namely customers and models/creators. Of course, physical contact will always be needed, and we’re aware of that, but digitalizing parts of the production will be a simpler way to book than if you go through the traditional way.