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Pam Nasr, Director and Stylist Talks Moving to New York, Dancing, and Making Movies

Pam Nasr

Pam Nasr her New York home wearing Vintage earrings and a top and pants from Depot-Vente Beirut. Photographed by Katherine Pekala


Born and raised in Dubai, Pam Nasr moved to Beirut after graduating from London College of Fashion with a degree in fashion styling and photography. She later decamped to New York City to enroll at the School of Visual Arts and study film. “What I love most about my neighborhood is the basketball court that’s right outside my apartment. It’s always filled with kids from the school next door,” says the Lebanese filmmaker of her Greenwich Village address. “That sets the tone for me. I spend most of my time at home as it’s where I work.” When she turns the corner of her block, she’s greeted with aromas reminiscent of her roots. “The place is called Manousheh and it gives me a little slice of comfort whenever I’m feeling a bit down,” she shares. “It’s authentically made and pretty close to the manaeesh I grew up with. They have a little bench right outside the shop, I have my manousheh, and it sets me straight.”

Pam Nasr

A bag Nasr bought on Beirut’s Hamra High Street. Photographed by Katherine Pekala


Nasr is busy organizing screenings for Clams Casino, her debut short film that she’s been working on since moving to the city. “It has changed my life and the work I do,” she says. “It allowed me to explore a completely new avenue of myself, express who I am deep down, and put that into a tangible production.” The movie centers around the internet eating phenomenon known as mukbang, as well as the complex affection and tension between mother and daughter. “Filmmaking is in the details. Whether it’s visual, the storyline, the script, the actors… Everything stepped out of the deepest parts of me,” she recounts. “As a director, you have your vision, and I was able to put my hands on every single part of the production. To do that, I made sure to be as loyal and honest to myself as possible.” Banding together with her crew helped her create one of the most buzzed about pictures on the festival circuit, which was awarded best short at the 2018 LA Femme Film Festival. “The aspect of collaboration was my favorite. When you’re a team, you’re a force.”


Nasr’s résumé also includes fashion stylist and set designer. Recently tapped for Mara Hoffman’s SS19 campaign, Nasr took a hands-on approach to the video that was shot in Miami. “It was a personal portrait that I directed, set designed, modeled, and shot. It was fun and so wonderful working with Mara. She’s going to be a continuous collaborator.”

Pam Nasr

Accesssories picked up on Hamra High Street and a white Coperni bag. Photographed by Katherine Pekala


To unwind, Nasr gets down on the dance floor. “Shaking everything off makes me feel so liberated and so like myself,” she exclaims, sharing that she likes to go to The Standard’s No Bar in the East Village. “My friends and I love it. It’s easygoing and we dance the night away,” says the Lebanese director. “They play everything from hip hop and R&B to a little funk, and a bit of disco. That’s the music that defines who I am.”

Pam Nasr

Nasr in Vintage earrings and top. Photographed by Katherine Pekala


Nasr’s vast closet shows no shortage of daring personality. First and foremost, she’s a maximalist, with Eighties referential pieces a common theme. Dig deeper, and you’ll come across her favorite patchwork leather jacket in caramel, brown, and white by Xander Zhou and silver metallic kitten heel knee boots by Turkish brand Dorateymur. “If I were a food, I would be a shrimp cocktail,” she says, booming with laughter. “I’m a loud person. I’m loud in my heart, identity, and clothing. It makes me feel safe and like myself.” Above everything else in her closet, she cherishes her vintage suit jackets picked up from Depot-Vente, her favorite vintage boutique in Beirut. Her most recent find was a royal blue, double-breasted, crop jacket by Michael Hoben. “I love this piece so much, from the leather, to the Eighties silhouette, and the prettiest shade of blue,” she muses. Nasr owns many vintage accessories handed down from her mother, including a pair of stark white kitten heel boots that she wears year-round and an ample collection of bold and bejeweled earrings. “My mom’s style is amazing. She inspires me every time I dress up,” she says, pulling out photos of her mother wearing a sharp skirt suit while in her twenties. “I feel like we have similar styles. We both love earrings, belts, scarves, and the little tidbits that you add to an outfit.”


In addition to her sartorial savviness, her boldest power piece is her hair. “I’m a Leo and it’s my lion’s mane,” says the bubbly director. “My hair has gone through a long journey. Straighteners used to be my best friends; I hated seeing a curl, and would smooth it down immediately.” It wasn’t until she was in her early twenties that she started to come to terms with her textured tresses that now bounce up off her shoulders. “My hair was so weak and damaged, but most importantly, the way I looked in the mirror didn’t feel the same as I felt inside,” she shares. Nasr went for the big chop with hairstylist Saleh at Beirut-based salon Beiroots, who transformed her hair with a shaggy, razor-layered crop that personifies her glam rock style.

Originally published in the April 2020 issue of Vogue Arabia

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