A Colombian Connection

Credit Corentin Fohlen for The New York Times

I have Colombian blood. I don’t think about it all the time but it is surely with me. When I see someone who is from Colombia I look carefully for something I recognize in myself. Something – I don’t know what. I guess I am looking for a connection. And when I hear about someone who is from Colombia, I take notice. It happened recently when I read that Nina Garcia, fashion journalist and critic (and long-time judge on Project Runway) is Colombian. And it happened today when I read the sad news that Colombian fashion designer and president of luxury handbag and accessories brand Nancy Gonzalez, Santiago Barberi Gonzalez, passed away. And so sad too, that he was only 40 years old. I didn’t know anything about the brand, but reading that it was deeply admired and that it’s design aesthetic was rooted in the natural beauty and rich culture of Colombia, touched me. And hearing about the kind of person Gonzalez was did connect me in some way – to his humanity. He sounded very special. As it happens, he and Nina Garcia were friends – she wrote on Instagram, “He was a star.”

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