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Impact Feature

Artistic Visionary Icon: Maria Platonova, Forbes People’s Cover Queen and Champion of Digital Art and Sustainability

Maria Platonova is a Russian digital art expert, art curator, fashion influencer, eco-activist

Maria Platonova is a unique person who perfectly combines aesthetic grace with intellectual passion. As a former beauty queen, having won the titles of Miss Moscow in 2016 and Miss Beauty of Russia in 2017, Maria has not only graced stages with her elegance, but she has also contributed to the development of digital art and environmental activism. Her diverse achievements have recently earned her a coveted spot on the cover of Forbes People, where she is celebrated not only for her past beauty titles, but also for her dynamic contribution to contemporary culture and sustainability.

Art and research activity

Maria’s journey into the world of art began with her interest in her great-grandfather’s legacy. She inherited an extensive collection from her great-grandfather, Boris Zotov, a devoted follower of revered artists like Levitan and Aivazovsky. In 2018, she curated her first exhibition featuring Zotov’s works, achieving critical acclaim and setting a new standard for integrating art within academic and public spaces. This exhibition remains a cornerstone of the State Public Library for Science and Technology, where Maria serves as a researcher and works on her PhD. Here, she has been instrumental in pioneering digital exhibitions, making art accessible and engaging through modern technological interpretations. When launching this project, she not only made an essential contribution to culture but also set a new trend in the development of the library space. She is currently studying an MBA course at Cambridge’s Hult International business school, which includes a detailed program on the digitalization of business and the arts. She plans to transfer international experience to Russian library projects. At the moment, there are practically no specialists in Russia who would deal with such things. After completing her studies, Maria plans to devote herself to the art and digitalization of library spaces, since she believes that spiritual activity within the walls of the library is no less important than scientific activity.

Maria plans to develop her projects not only on the Russian art market. She is planning to open an international digital art gallery where she will support young artists and help them develop their craft. In the near future she will organize an international competition among young artists on a special website. Her blog on website reflects her deep commitment to making art accessible to a broader audience.

Environmental sustainability

Maria’s commitment to sustainability is equally impressive. Inspired by the stark environmental challenges observed during her travels, particularly in India, Maria has become a vocal advocate for ecological conservation and waste management. Her personal experiences, witnessing the dire consequences of pollution, propelled her to participate in and organize clean-up drives, and she actively promotes recycling and sustainable practices both online and in public speeches. Her travels to places like Gondo in India highlighted the severe impacts of pollution, galvanizing her to action. Her firsthand experience with the dire conditions sparked a series of initiatives aimed at waste management and recycling, demonstrating how individual actions can lead to substantial environmental impacts.

Go green, save nature, love your planet and it will be reciprocal”, – says Maria.

Maria’s influence also permeates the fashion industry. Collaborating with international designers like Moschino and Alexander McQueen (for the last 5 years, she has walked in fashion shows for them) , she leverages her fashion insights to advocate for sustainable fashion, encouraging designers to adopt eco-friendly practices and materials. Maria is developing the idea of ​​sustainable fashion. She promotes buying items that you know are going to work for you all year round. She urges us not to shell out on an entire summer wardrobe each year, if we live somewhere that’s cold and rainy. Instead, she suggests spending the bulk of money on layerable, versatile pieces that will last through more than one season. 

In an era where the internet is flooded with transient content and fast fashion reigns, Maria’s work is a reminder of the lasting power of art and the urgent need for sustainability. Her efforts are not just about creating art but about fostering a world where art and ecological consciousness go hand in hand.

Fashion and beauty

But perhaps what makes Maria truly stand out is her involvement in the fashion world. From walking in fashion shows for top designers to preparing for the prestigious Met Gala, her flair for fashion is another arena where she excels. Maria’s preparation for the Met Gala, in particular, is a testament to her dedication and her ability to shine on global platforms. Maria was invited to the Met Gala in 2023. Her team was negotiating with designers and developing an individual suit for the red carpet. 

In 2024 Maria has also ventured into the entrepreneurial world by launching her own cosmetic brand, LA HEBE, focusing on beauty and skincare. LA HEBE is a natural beauty brand that has organic certifications and isn’t tested on animals. 

Maria’s journey in the beauty pageant world is equally illustrious. Her titles include: The Beauty of Russia 2012 (Miss Harmony, Miss Sports), The Beauty of Russia 2013 (Miss The best figure of Russia), Miss Moscow 2016 (Winner), Miss Asia Pacific International 2017 (Top 5), Miss Beauty of Moscow 2017 (Winner). This year Maria is representing Russia at Miss UAE International 2024. 

Currently, Maria is participating in the Miss Middle East International 2024, representing Russia. Her success in these competitions is a testament to her grace, intelligence, and dedication, qualities that she brings to every aspect of her life.

Maria Platonova is a multifaceted leader whose contributions span across art, environmental advocacy, fashion, and business. Her ability to blend beauty with purpose has made her a significant figure in contemporary culture. Maria’s story is a powerful reminder of how passion, innovation, and resilience can drive meaningful change and inspire future generations.

As she continues to break new ground in her various endeavors, Maria remains a beacon of hope and a catalyst for positive change in the world. Her journey is a testament to the transformative power of combining artistic vision with a deep commitment to sustainability and social impact.

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