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AMI ANGEL

Ami Evelyn Hughes is the artist making space for raw, clumsy beauty

The co-founder of GUT Magazine talks body confidence, caterpillar eyebrows and Anna Nicole-Smith

The Dazed Beauty Community is our ever-expanding encyclopaedia of creatives and emerging talent from across the world who are redefining the way we think about beauty. From supermodels to digital artists to makeup prodigies transforming themselves in their bedrooms, these are the beauty influencers of tomorrow who embody everything Dazed Beauty is about. Discover them here.

“Beauty has been a real journey for me,” says Ami Evelyn Hughes. “I have come to embrace my funny, round look. I have this little weird cherub face and this big fleshy body and it’s not what I would have chosen but it’s me.”

Growing up in the East Midlands to ex-army parents, artist and writer Ami didn’t think about beauty or body confidence very much. “I grew up confident in my creative ability and intelligence,” she says, “my dad praised my skills over my looks.”  

In 2015, Ami founded the anti-fashion magazine GUT alongside Georgia Kemball, who she met at Brighton University where they were both studying art. Frustrated by the lack of inspiration and imagination in mainstream publications, GUT was a celebration of the instinctual, the clumsy and the raw; a space where they could explore everything from adult breastfeeding in Renaissance paintings to Scottish folklore to vomit art. “We were tired of only seeing sleek, over-considered images,” Ami told Dazed at the time. “We want GUT to be raw and from a very real place – to have soul, integrity and courage.”

Now on its fourth issue, GUT’s latest incarnation focuses on death and the underworld, addressing the different aspects surrounding physical as well as theatrical death, from possession to mythological beliefs of the ‘underworld.’

Outside of GUT, Ami acts as art director for a number of brands and is currently preparing for her first solo show which launches at Soft Opening this Christmas.

What’s your earliest beauty related memory?
The very first things that came to mind are me plucking my eyebrows so thin after an awful girl at school told me I had caterpillar eyebrows (dream eyebrows) and they have sadly never grown back. Also sitting on the beach with my auntie Sharon and her telling me never to shave my legs above my knees.

What does beauty mean to you?
Beauty has been a real journey for me. I feel like your parents really shape this aspect of yourself, it’s funny that the only two things I have ever liked about myself are my nose and my skin. The only kind remark my dad ever made was about my nose, he said: “people pay to get perfect little noses like yours”. As I’ve gotten older and wiser, I realise beauty is in confidence and I have spade loads of that. A couple of years ago Claire Barrow put me in her amazing campaign and since then I have been cast a few times for really amazing things and this has really changed my outlook on myself and what beauty actually means. I have come to embrace my funny, round look. I have this little weird cherub face and this big fleshy body and it’s not what I would have chosen but it’s me.

It is the sixth day and you are creating humans. They can look however you want them to. What do they look like and why?
Elves, Orcs, goblins, wizards, fairies, trolls, ents, sirens, demons…

Tomorrow you wake up with another face of your choice. Whose is it and why?
Anna Nicole’s. Because she was perfect.

If you could have a new sense on top of your existing ones, what would it be?
Mind reading.

You have to replace your body with that of an animal or a mythological creature. What do you go for and why?
Definitely a dragon because they are strong and mysterious.  

A friend once exclaimed that when he dies he wants ‘Weeping virgins carved from marble to be placed in a circle around his grave’. What would your ideal tombstone look like?
A huge carved stone crying angel with massive lips and boobs, wearing a bonnet and the most feathery regal angel wings you’ve ever seen.

What is the future of beauty?
Real inclusivity, no token fat girls, black girls, trans girls, no ‘token’ anyone just beauty as individuality and making sure anyone growing up in this era and the next that beauty is about confidence and only you can give yourself it and that everyone is ‘enough’ on their own.  

It's 30 years from now. You stumble home at 3 am and catch your reflection in the fridge door. What do you look like?
Little Edie.