The inked celebrity was found dead at his home this week.
Lady GaGa and more have reacted to the shocking news that tattoo icon Rick Genest (aka Zombie Boy) has passed away at the age of 32, apparently having taken his own life at his home in Montreal. Cause of death is yet to be confirmed, but Gaga has commented since with regards to mental health.
Rick Genest at New York Fashion Week
The Canadian actor, model and performer - perhaps best known for his appearance in Gaga's 'Born This Way' video - allegedly committed suicide on Wednesday (August 1st 2018) less than a week ahead of his 33rd birthday the following Tuesday. He was found dead at his home but there are so far no further details.
'The suicide of friend Rick Genest, Zombie Boy is beyond devastating', Lady Gaga wrote on Twitter. 'We have to work harder to change the culture, bring Mental Health to the forefront and erase the stigma that we can't talk about it. If you are suffering, call a friend or family today. We must save each other.'
Science tells us that it takes 21 days to form a habit, if you are suffering from Mental Health issue I beckon for today to be your first day or a continuation of the work you've been doing. Reach out if you're in pain, and if you know someone who is, reach out to them too. pic.twitter.com/4pVR5xyoH6— Lady Gaga (@ladygaga) August 3, 2018
Rick, or Rico, was a big face in the world of tattoos, having been covered from head to toe in corpse-style ink. Interestingly, he was given the nickname Zombie Boy before he got his first tattoo at 16.
He began his career as a freakshow artist and then made his acting debut in the Gemini Award-nominated Canadian TV movie 'Carny' in 2009. In 2011, he modelled for Thierry Mugler with Lady Gaga, before appearing in 'Born This Way'. He went on to become a viral sensation in the Dermablend 'Go Beyond the Cover' campaign for concealer and later ended up becoming the first ever male spokesperson for L'Oreal.
He went on to have a small role as the foreman in '47 Ronin' in 2013 opposite Keanu Reeves. He also featured in the music videos for Hong Kong artist Juno Mak's 'Poison Love' and Polish pop singer Honey's 'Sabotage', as well a number of short films including 'In Faustian Fashion' amd 'En Passant'. Last year, he apppeared in two episodes of 'Silent Witness' and was one of the subjects in the Sophy Holland-directed tattoo documentary 'Illustrated Man'.
In recent years, he had been working on developing a music career, collaborating with the likes of KAV and Rob Zombie guitarist Riggs. Plus, next year, an 11.5-foot statue of Rick, designed by Marc Quinn, will be unveiled at the Science Museum in London as a permanent exhibition under the title 'Self-Conscious Gene'.
'We received the bad news in the early afternoon and members of the team rushed to support his family and loved ones in this dark and difficult moment', his management wrote on Facebook. 'We want to offer them our deepest condolences and the legend will survive the human. Thank you ZB for these beautiful moments in your company and for your radiant smile.'
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