The Improbable Life of Paula Zoe Helfrich

She was the daughter of a U.S. spy, an exile from Burma, a Pan Am flight attendant on a rescue mission to Saigon, and one half of an epic love story. But only part of that was true. The Atavist, May 2017. 

Circling Back

Mexican contemporary artist Gabriel Orozco—painter, sculptor, provocateur—changes direction in this profile for VQR's winter 2014 issue. 

The New Way to Eat Cuba

The most successful of the new crop of Cuban restauranteurs, Niuris Higueras, and how she stays that way. Saveur, October 2015. 


"If there was one thing Sandra knew well, it was hair." VQR, Spring 2013. Also Best American Travel Writing 2014, edited by Paul Theroux; in Spanish in Gatopardo, May 2014; and One World, Many Cultures, 10th edition. 

Mario Testino

"Mario Testino talks with his hands. He waves them when excited. He uses one to poke at the other to illustrate a point. He twirls them to emphasize the continuation of an idea, and he holds them in front of his body to indicate stillness. Testino addresses questions with half words, half hands." On photography, Peru, and Anna Wintour. Surface, October 2014 

Searching for Santería

"If Isnael had a knack for work that required stillness and focus, he explained to me one day, it was because he was destined for it. He was a “son” of Yemayá, the orisha or goddess of the oceans and patron of motherhood." The Rumpus, 2014

Alice Aycock

"This is, more or less, artist Alice Aycock’s goal: “If I am successful, people will say, ‘Hey, what is that?’ They won’t just say, ‘Oh, that’s a piece of art,’” she says. “They’ll say, ‘I saw this thing and it was interesting.’ And then I’ve caused the average person to at least for a moment break through the monotonous visual landscape we have in this country, of highways and cookie-cutter houses and shopping centers.” Surface, Winter 2013. 

Cai Guo-Qiang

"Careening cars, lit gunpowder, disconcertingly convincing stuffed animals: Much of the work of Chinese-born, New York-based artist Cai Guo-Qiang hovers between violence and retrospection, force and elegance." Surface, January 2014


How one Cuban filmmaker bucks the revolution and reimagines Utopia. Guernica, March 2012


Insanely prolific and colorful design writer Steve Heller – a fetish for Nazi design esoterica and 140 books written, co-authored, edited, or somehow otherwise compiled by the man – made a great profile subject for The Village Voice, October, 2011


How a Mexican entrepreneur got a convention for the sexual entertainment industry off the ground in Catholic Mexico. Conde Nast's Portfolio, 2008.