10 People To Meet Liz Goldwyn
Despite her family’s deep-rooted Hollywood ancestry, the spotlight has never been any kind of lure for Goldwyn.
While the camera clearly loves her high, sculpted cheekbones, long neck and mane of Rita Hayworth red hair, she describes a certain love of solitude and being at her happiest while, “In the library buried in my research.” Her natural bookishness has seen her holding esteemed positions within Sotheby’s, founding and directing a fashion and arts-installation programme for the cosmetics giant Shiseido, as well as holding the position of New York editor of French Vogue between 2001-2002. Goldwyn’s first film, Pretty Things, was in itself the result of a decade’s worth of research, and was subsequently turned into a book for HarperCollins, so it’s perhaps no surprise that our meeting takes place in the gardens of the UCLA campus during a brief break from her visiting its Collections.
How long have you lived in LA?
“I was born in LA and my father was a first-generation Hollywood baby so, for this new part of the world, I have deep roots. I’ve lived in NY and in London, which hold special places in my heart, but I am a California girl through and through.”
Why did you move to LA?
“I moved back to LA from NY to finish my first film, Pretty Things, a documentary about burlesque, and never left.”
What’s your favourite thing to do in LA?
“The weather and lifestyle in LA allow a lot of solitude, space and light to be creative, write, direct, make things happen. We also have the mountains, sea, desert and night-blooming jasmine in abundance. I love to drive – or be a passenger in the car – at the golden hour, end of the day, listening to music at top volume on the stereo and watching the light filter through the palm trees as we pass by. It provides a good balance to work – to be able to escape your head and breathe in the landscape here – which is so magical that sometimes I have to pinch myself to believe it.”
How would you define yourself?
“I call myself a writer, director and artist – but I am happiest in the library buried in research. My secret wish and ultimate goal is to get my PhD. Then I will define myself as, ‘Dr Goldwyn, sex academic’!”
What do you do to relax?
“To relax I Hula Hoop and do cartwheels wherever and whenever I can – preferably barefoot in the grass or on the beach. And dance. My favourite sweaty dance party in LA is Punky Reggae on Friday nights at a dive bar downtown.”
Have you been Disneyland? What was your favourite ride?
“I’ve been to Disneyland but I’ve never been on a rollercoaster. I’m more of a Small World and Pirates of the Caribbean kind of girl.”
Health food or champagne?
“I make a green smoothie every morning, but I am not averse to an extra dirty vodka martini – health and vice in moderation.”
Photographer: Maria Ziegelboeck
By Vincent Levy