FOR WHOM THE BEARD TOLLS—RICKI HALL AND THE HEMINGWAY MYSTIQUE
The modeling industry today is a far cry from the world of masculinity created by Ernest Hemingway, and yet “Hemingway” is as much a descriptor as any fashion label or other kind of modeling-friendly adjective. If you describe someone as being “like Hemingway” or “living up to the Hemingway ideal” or their style as being “Hemingway-esque,” you know just what they mean. In life, Ernest Hemingway came to have an aura and reputation similar to “The Most Interesting Man in the World” from Dos Equis commercials; in his work, he depicted the epitome of masculinity and grace under pressure.
And all of this buzz, grace and rugged individualism is sadly lacking from much of the male modeling world—with one exception.
Ricki Hall has voiced his displeasure with the state of the male modeling industry today. In particular, as cited here, Hall seems determined to reverse what he sees as a negative trend in the male modeling industry, namely, the lack of the sort of graceful and simple “masculinity” which was so much a part of Hemingway’s books. Quoted as saying “You can’t get more manly than a hairy man, that wears a musky cologne and smells of dirt, cigarettes and beer,” Hall has clearly strived to make that image his own and bring that Hemingway ideal to life in the world of modeling.
A hairy man? He’s one of the hairiest in the modeling industry today, with his beard in particular standing out. With so many models today sporting close, clean shaves, to have a beard at all is a sign that Ricki Hall is not your average model—indeed, he’s out to break the mold of the average model. His beard is so reminiscent of that rugged ideal of masculinity that it calls back to an even earlier time—
Hemingway? Try Beowulf.
With his cut body, outdoorsman persona, rugged look and a face framed by a powerful brown and beard, Ricki Hall looks like something of a warrior.
Again, not at all like the normal modeling set.
Another variation are his tattoos. He has so many it’s hard to keep track, and that in and of itself is impressive. With tattoos being a mark of masculinity in many circles, to be that cut, have that powerful an outdoors streak, have that kind of beard and that many tattoos—
Ricki Hall definitely looks to put the “male” in “male modeling.”
And then some.