Wednesday, April 24, 2013
Ever since Matthew Wojnarowicz was a young child, strangers would stop his parents and ask if he was a model. People encouraged Brigette and Dominik Wojnarowicz to send him to an agency.
But they both agreed to just let their son “be a kid,” and not enroll him in modeling opportunities.
But now at 8 years old, charismatic Matthew has become this year’s Charleston Fashion Week sensation.
With utter calmness, he strode down the runway. But at the end of his walk, he struck a sensational pose, flashing two peace signs, much to everyone’s surprise. The picture went viral and he’s off to New York with his parents for a shot at the big time.
Matthew is home-schooled by his mother and shows great interest in math and game designing. But he showed something unique, and while Brigette and Dominik agree that all children are beautiful he showed a different quality than others.
They began researching possible modeling opportunities and he has now traveled the world over, being photographed for spot and print campaigns. He was signed with Wilhamena Model and Talent Agency. That’s when his parents watched him with other child models and could see he was truly in his element.
Most recently Matthew was scouted for Charleston Fashion Week, but when they arrived for the scheduled audition, they learned the designer already had enough models. The family was asked to bring Matthew back as a “wild card” audition, which is an open casting call for more than 300 kids.
He was chosen and stood back stage waiting for his big moment. “He was very understated and calm,” Brigette said, and the designer encouraged him to ‘do his thing.’ When he got out there he truly shined and each time he does the runway, he surprises us all.”
She said throwing up those peace signs was not planned, but certainly worked in his favor.
He’s got his own style and a natural swagger. Perhaps that comes from his full immersion into the arts and culture.
He holds a dual America/Polish citizenship and a natural curiosity to learn new things.
“As a mommy, I must honor my son’s courage by sharing his journey to fashion week. Our son is a natural model and talented actor and that is his gift. But, no one believed in our son at first. Throughout his very young life, every modeling opportunity that came his way, mean-spirited people sabotaged them. We unfortunately even faced mean spiritedness from local parents in the audition process for Charleston Fashion Week. I stood up to this mean spiritedness because I believe in our son and I believed our son’s look and talent merited his place in Charleston Fashion Week. His peace signs at the height of his walk in the show were prophetic, as they symbolized forgiveness, triumph and victory,” Brigette said.
He was accepted to Charleston Collegiate School and will return to the Lowcountry in the fall.
He was also pre-selected for Atlanta International Fashion Week and will appear in the the Kid’s Cotour Show.
The family is off to New York to continue with their young son’s career, which may result in Matthew Wojnarowicz becoming a household name.