Zen Sevastyanova (b. 1989) is a Russian-born fashion model who grew up in Poland after moving there at age 7. Zen is known for her angular features, full eyebrows, and unique sense of style. Recently, she has appeared in runway shows for Alexis Mabille (fall/winter 2013 and 2014), David Koma (spring/summer 2014), Lela Rose (fall/winter 2014), Antonio Marras (spring/summer 2014), Todd Lynn (spring/summer 2014), Maison Martin Margiela (fall/winter 2013), Nanette Lepore (fall/winter 2013), Chanel (fall/winter 2012), Costume National (fall/winter 2012), Creatures of the Wind (fall/winter 2013), Peter Som (fall/winter 2013), and Zac Posen (spring/summer 2013).
Magazine covers Zen has appeared on include Dazed & Confused (July 2012) and Elle UK (August 2014). She has been featured in editorials in Elle, Elle UK, French Revue de Modes, Glamour Germany, Interview Russia, Harper’s Bazaar UK, L’Officiel, Pop Magazine, Marie Claire, Vogue Russia, Vogue Italia, Vogue Paris, W Magazine, and V Magazine. She has also been photographed by Elias Wessel for the Futureclaw Magazine editorial “Falling Up,” which showcases couture clothes with expressive black and white photography, contrasting the fashions with deserted urban settings. Zen has done advertisements for Edun, El Palacio de Hierro, and Christofle Bijoux. She has also appeared in lookbooks for John Galliano, Peter Som, and Prada.
She goes by Zen, but her given name is Zenia. Zen became a model after trying out at a Polish dance company at age 13. Her first job was a New Year's editorial in the Polish magazine Bravo, and she has since gone on to appear in many magazines and runway shows. She enjoys working in London, and some of her favorite designers are Zac Posen, Christophe Lamaire at Hermes, and Alber Elbaz. She likes to combine femininity with an edgy, androgynous look, and her style has been described as delicate yet strong and soulful. Her experience in the fashion industry has led her to develop an interest in art. Zen enjoys drawing and visiting museums all over the world when she is not modeling, and appreciates the work of photographer Ellen Von Unworth, who she says, “makes women look powerful and sexy without objectifying them.” Her art is informed by her modeling experience and often deals with the objectification of women, and in November 2014 she was preparing for her first art show. Zen mostly works in ink, producing complicated, surreal drawings. She is inspired by the work of Pablo Picasso, Egon Schiele, and Salvador Dali. Zen discussed feeling like an outsider as a child in one recent interview, and says she is happy to have a career that allows her to express herself. She enjoys finding inspiration in nature in addition to art and fashion.
Zen is also passionate about recycling in fashion, and she says, “I respect Stella McCartney for what she does with sustainable and recycled fashion. To me, it’s more interesting to see what a designer can do when they choose to make something new out of something old.” She supports recent fashion initiatives that encourage ethical sourcing and sustainability, emphasizing the need for consumers to have a say in the fashion they support. Zen also hopes to launch a line of natural skincare and aromatherapy products made with blended essential oils with a close friend in the near future. She enjoys modeling, but also believes it is important to stay independent and able to pursue other interests.
Agencies Zen works with include Wilhelmina New York, IMG in Paris, London, and Milan, VIVA Models Berlin, IMM Bruxelles, Modelwerk, Two Management in Los Angeles, and Madrid’s Mad Models.