Who didn't see this coming? Rising torch-pop songstress Lana Del Rey, who is set to perform on Saturday Night Live on January 14th, has signed a modeling contract with NEXT Model Management as the newest addition to their talent division.
Musicians armed with modeling contracts are not a new phenomenon – in recent years, everyone from Florence Welch to Ellie Goulding to industry veteran Gloria Estefan has earned one, while Taylor Momsen recently lost hers – but in Del Rey's case, the modeling step feels particularly fateful. With her deliberate take on Ann-Margret's bombshell visuals, Lana's slightly surreal brand of Americana retroism falls in line perfectly with fashion's recent provocative references to the past. While Del Rey's name (or names, as she used to record under her real one, Lizzy Grant) and accompanying notoriety swept across the internet last September, her music was already being played on Spring 2012 runways like Christopher Kane's long before it came anywhere near traditional media. What's more, Prada's latest show set a tone for Spring 2012 with a loose theme of "driving in cars with boys" – also the title of a proto-del Rey/Lizzy Grant track – by providing a campy but well-executed trip through 1950s pin-up culture.
As designers like Prabal Gurung rush to dress Del Rey for her first red-carpet appearances and brands like Mulberry take notice, it's no wonder the pop singer is crossing over to modeling; a convincing fake Prada ad featuring Del Rey even shot through the fashion blogosphere recently. Can the real thing be far off?