Images courtesy of Michael Stokes Photography
Quentin Elias, most known for his work as a model (Armani, Jean-Paul Gaultier and many well known LGBT photographers) and from his days as lead singer of the French boy band Alliage, has passed away at just 33 years old (born May 10, 1980; other sources report a birth year of 1974).
Details are sparse, but according to recent reports popping up via social media, the Frenchman, originally of Algerian decent, was found dead on his couch in New York yesterday from an alleged heart attack.
The following was posted on Elias' Facebook page by his management earlier today:
Tomorrow a statement will be made on the announcement of the passing of “Quentin Elias” this is a very sad time for his family and fans around the world. Please be patient for the official press release as it will be posted here tomorrow. – MGMT
Elias worked with many well-known photographers in the community, including Michael Stokes, who released this exclusive statement to Instinct:
I hope someone does a serious biography on Quentin. His life was not easy, and while some people may look at him and judge him for any variety of reasons people judge other people, they might take pause if they knew his whole story. In many ways he is an archetype, representative of many struggling artists. At age 15, he ran away from his home in Marseilles to Paris and took on odd labor jobs. To make it from that to being a lead singer in a boy band is a tremendous feat. While his good looks no doubt played a factor, as a child he was teased mercilessly because of the way he looked, his distinctive features that had not yet matured. There is so much more to his story, and I believe he would be happy for people to know the true story, the real story because now he no longer has the pressure of a career and the politics that go along with it.
My heart breaks to hear that we lost another young vibrant beautiful talented friend Quentin Elias too soon. People would sometimes mistake us, which I always took as a huge compliment cause in my mind I was nowhere near the stud that Quentin was. I went to Prague with Quentin on this crazy gig that was canceled when we got there about 10 years ago. Quentin was fun, funny and sweet and I had a crush on him like everyone else who knew him. Last time I saw him he gave me such love and respect for my music which was so big of him as people often pit us against each other as gay male singers and I was truly touched. We will miss you, Quentin, your voice, your beauty and your heart–your soul lives forever.