After the death of friend and photographer Chris von Wangenheim in March of 1981, Gia, embraced by sadness, lost all control over her heroin addiction. Her beauty that created a sensation at the start of her career now reflected an image wasted by the ravages of addiction.
By fall of ’81, Gia determined to make a modeling comeback but was met with skepticism and derision. Francesco Scavullo out of sympathy offered her a cover-shoot for Cosmopolitan magazine. It was a gift. Scavullo felt pity for the model he had photographed at the height of her dazzling but short-lived career. Wanting to help her, Scavullo insisted that Gia deserved the winter cover shoot for the April 1982 issue. Gia did not live up to the favor. Her arms, scarred from the puncture marks of her addiction to heroin, could not be concealed in the sleeveless Fabrice gown chosen for the cover. Scavullo got around the problem by having Gia keep her arms tucked behind her. It would be Gia Carangi’s last cover.
Once a Great Beauty