Lost in Translation with Elizabeth Pipko
Model Elizabeth Pipko is not defined by just a pretty face. At only 26 years old, Pipko’s name has been captured by a plethora of audiences such as fashion aficionados as well as those involved in the infamous political world.
Pipko began her career in modeling at the age of 17 when discovered by Wilhelmina Models and has had the privilege to appear in Maxim, DT, Esquire, and L’officiel spreads. This September she graced the cover of LaPalme magazine, which has also featured Olivia Culpo and Ariel Winter as cover stars. Pipko and her looks are often compared to American model and actress Emily Ratajkowski, who starred in the controversial video “Blurred Lines” by artists Robin Thicke, T.I., and Pharrell Williams in 2013.
Ratajkowski is currently promoting her new book titled “My Body”, where she hurdles over the reality of women gaining power from beauty where they are indebted to the men whose desire originally provided them with that power.
Photography: Gato Rivero @gatoriveroph Glam: Peggy Mackey @peggymackeybeauty Production / PR: Matt Dillon @mattdillon1983 Story: Aida M. Toro @aidamtoro
“I think the best way to put it is that people don’t often understand what I mean when I talk about my experiences as a woman, something Emily does quite a lot and very well,” stated Pipko in regards to feminism and to Ratajkowski’s new book. “I don’t often think about my gender, nor believe it is a reason I wouldn’t be able to accomplish my goals, but that doesn’t mean I can’t share stories for days about things that have happened to me that I would not wish upon my worst enemy. Lets just say there are certain situations that women will unfortunately find themselves in that a lot of men will never have to experience.”
Pipko recalled an agency holiday party she attended with one of her best friends back when she was a teenager at a popular nightclub in Manhattan. She believed she was going to a celebration with agents and friends, but the event quickly turned out to be an album release party for R. Kelly.
“Obviously, we can all understand how that makes me feel today looking back and realizing we were teenage girls completely oblivious to some of the horrors around us,” said Pipko.
Aside from gracing key fashion publications, Pipko appears on television on a regular basis to speak on topics from pop culture to politics. Due to her being a part of multiple high-stakes industries, Pipko has obtained a front row seat to a relevant topic in today’s world: cancel culture.
“I have always said cancel culture will have serious repercussions,” she expressed. “Trying to cancel those you don’t like or agree with results in a cultural divide like we are experiencing today and people fabricating stories and events according to their own beliefs about someone…if you believe someone is a bad person, don’t “cancel” them, let the world see what it is that you see.”
“Nowadays, it seems like every article along with every headline is trying to push some kind of personal or political agenda,” she says.
Pipko acknowledges the notion that individuals regularly make controversial comments to simply “go viral” or to receive attention from the press in order to gain the spotlight. As wrong as she believes this modus operandi is, she still feels the media is just as wrong as those who seek this sort of attention. Pipko talked about a variety of newsworthy pieces she felt were worth the discussion, however, the recent media focus on Barstool Sports Founder, Dave Portnoy, was one that she had loads to say about.
“What is happening to Dave Portnoy right now looks like a hit job done for personal or even political reasons,” she said. “Look…this isn’t new…I remember when the NY Times did a piece on me and I was called a “racy lingerie model” in the first few sentences because the writer didn’t like my politics….that’s a horrible way to describe a young woman, especially in what is supposed to be a political story, but that is what things have come down to in this country for a lot of people.”
Overall, Pipko doesn’t want to be put into the so-called box with anybody else. She states that If you know her, then you know she has zero filter, is always transparent, as well as respectful and kind to everyone she speaks to, which she doesn’t think is too much of a request when asking to receive the same in return.
As multiple projects and industries play a key role in Pipko’s life, she authored a memoir published last year, “Finding My Place: Making My Parents’ American Dream Come True” to give people a better idea of her story and upbringing. In the book, Pipko provides specifics on the sacrifices her Jewish parents and grandparents made to come to the United States in order for her to experience a better life. Their sacrifices are also the reason Pipko works as hard as she does in the fight against anti-Semitism. In 2019, she was honored by the Batsheva organization for “lighting the way for Jewish women worldwide.” As is known, Pipko desires to be the individual that can prove anyone can do it all. Most importantly, women can do it all. This explains much of her admiration for the likes of Kim Kardashian, who she spoke very highly of.
“I am a huge fan of Kim Kardashian and I thought she was amazing on Saturday Night Live recently,” said Pipko. “Her work for criminal justice reform was also monumental and proved that with enough hard work you can do it all, including literally changing the world.”
Pipko has another book in the works, which she says she hopes to spend the next year writing. Aside from her book, Pipko says she wants to continue to grow as an individual and attempt to make her mark in every industry she chooses to enter into.
Pipko stayed coy about a possible political run in the future, though she did offer a sharp response to the question of whether she believes former President Trump will run in 2024.
“I think you can count on it,” she said.
Her cover and spread was shot in Little Havana, Miami. Pipko hopes the images can bring attention to the beauty and culture she says she experienced while on set.
“Being from a family of immigrants, and being raised in New York City, I’ve been taught to appreciate the different aspects of peoples’ cultures and how well they all come together to create the melting pot that is the United States,” she expressed.
Pipko is extremely honored to be the featured cover figure for Contrast Magazine, as she feels the publication’s messaging to be strikingly different aligns exactly with her main objective.
“In a world that is constantly trying to change you, it is so difficult to fight that and remain what you were supposed to be,” said Pipko. “But that’s what rebels do.”
Pipko doesn’t plan on being cancelled or swayed in any way as she is paving her own path by utilizing her voice as is. As she puts it kindly on the table: take it or leave it.
Photography: Gato Rivero @gatoriveroph
Glam: Peggy Mackey @peggymackeybeauty
Production / PR: Matt Dillon @mattdillon1983
Story: Aida M. Toro @aidamtoro