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Tan Mang Ling (born 9 October 1974 in Kuala Lumpur), usually credited as Ling Tan, is a Malaysian supermodel, of Chinese descent, based in New York City. The first supermodel from Southeast Asia, she participated in hundreds of fashion shows and has been captured by top fashion photographers such as Richard Avedon, who photographed Tan for the Pirelli Calendar in 1997.[1][5][6]

Ling Tan
Ling the model Shankbone Metropolitan Opera 2009.jpg
Tan Mang Ling[1]

(1974-10-09) 9 October 1974 (age 44)[2]
ResidenceManhattan, New York City
NationalityMalaysian, of Chinese descent
OccupationFashion model
Modeling information
Height(US) 5 ft 9.5 in (1.77 m)
(EU) 177cm
Hair colorBlack
Eye colorDark Brown
AgencyThe Model CoOp (New York)
Elite Model Management (Paris, Toronto)
Uno Models (Barcelona)
Munich Models (Munich) [3]
Chinese name
Traditional Chinese陳曼齡[4]
Simplified Chinese陈曼龄


Early lifeEdit

Tan was born and raised in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and is of Chinese ancestry.[1][5] She has a younger sister who is also a model.[1] Her father was a taxi driver and her mother a seamstress. She was educated in a Chinese school and speaks four varieties of Chinese as well as Malay and English. Tan also studied art and design before beginning her career as a model.[1][7]

Discovered and career beginningsEdit

Her career started when she participated in a local competition, the Asian Model Search contest, in Malaysia, where she won first place in the Malaysian section. She then went on to become the first runner up in the international finals of the Asian Model Search contest in 1994.

Her first big break came when she was discovered at a small fashion show while waiting for a friend in a hotel lobby, by an advertising executive.[1][5] Tan then appeared in an ad campaign for Tiger Beer. These commercials propelled Tan to success and she became the hottest model in Malaysia.[1][5] European and American designers showing their collections in Malaysia were impressed with Tan’s talent and encouraged her to move to New York City.[1][5]

Success and acting debutEdit

Tan has been seen in hundreds of shows in New York, London, Milan, Rome and Paris. According to Fashion Model Directory, she appeared in over 30 shows in Fall 1997/Winter 1998 and Spring/Summer 1998.

Tan's first catwalk show was Zang Toi's Spring/ Summer 1995 show in November 1994.[5] Tan has worked with many top designers, including Giambattista Valli, Elie Saab, Karl Lagerfeld, Yves Saint Laurent, Tom Ford, Emporio Armani, Donna Karan, and Chanel.[citation needed] She has also been photographed by leading fashion photographers including Irving Penn,[6] Mario Testino,[6] Peter Lindbergh,[6] and Richard Avedon, who photographed Tan for the Pirelli calendar in 1997.[6]

Tan has appeared on the covers and editorial pages of top fashion magazines. She was the subject of a twelve-page feature story in the prestigious Italian Vogue and a spread in Vogue US and Vogue China. She also appeared on the covers of Vogue Germany in November 1998, Vogue Korea in April 1999 and now defunct Vogue Singapore in 1996.[8][9] She appeared in Prestige Magazines Malaysian edition alongside Malaysian shoe designer, Jimmy Choo.[10]

Tan has appeared in advertising campaigns, such as Ann Taylor’s 50th Anniversary “50 Women”,[11] Banana Republic online ad campaign in Spring 2009, Bergdorf Goodman, Bloomingdale's Holiday ad campaign in 2007, Old Navy Perfect Summer Ad in Summer 2008, and Yves Saint Laurent.[1][2][5][6] Tan has worked on the small screen, appearing in television commercials for Emporio Armani fragrances, FORD Car, La Poste (France’s postal service) and Pantene Hair Color.[1][2][5][12] She was also featured in George Michael’s music video for his hit song "Fast Love".

She has been the subject of a biography featured on CNN’s Style Network with Elsa Klensch, and has appeared on the HBO series, Sex and The City and the CBS series, Blue Bloods.[6]

After a long hiatus from the runway, Tan walked for the Givenchy Fall/Winter 2010 show in Paris and did a video for Polo Ralph Lauren for the Fall 2010 campaign.[13] In 2011, Tan along with Yasmin Warsame, Elsa Benítez, and Jacquetta Wheeler, was the face of L'Oreal Code Breaker Winter 2010 and Spring 2011 campaign.[14] Ling Tan and her younger sister, Ein Tan, appeared together on the covers of Harper's Bazaar Malaysia and Harper's Bazaar Singapore.[1] In 2014, Tan appeared as special guest in the final episode of Asia's Next Top Model Cycle 2 and 3rd episode of Asia's Next Top Model Cycle 5.


Tan has signed with The Model CoOp in New York City, and Innovative Artists Talent And Literary Agency, also in New York. She has also signed with Elite Paris, Elite Toronto, Munich Models and UNO Models in Barcelona. She used to be signed with IMG and Wilhelmina Models in New York.[15][16][17][18]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Yoga, S. S. (2 August 2010). "Malaysia's runway dar-Ling". The Star. Retrieved 2 December 2010.
  2. ^ a b c "Ling Tang". Retrieved 8 December 2012.
  3. ^
  4. ^ "不施脂粉‧不爭曝光‧陳曼齡要嚐盡檳美食". Guang Ming Daily (Malaysia). 3 July 2011. Retrieved 20 October 2015.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h Taos, Hillary (31 October 2013). "Top Model Ling Tan". Retrieved 13 January 2014.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g Larsen, Michelle Christina (14 June 2013). "Food Meets Fashion: Ling Tan". Scripps Networks. Archived from the original on 14 January 2014. Retrieved 13 January 2014.
  7. ^ Model Community. Retrieved on 03 November 2014
  8. ^ See John Galliano’s Finest Moments in Vogue, Vogue, 27 October 2005. Retrieved on 5 November 2014.
  9. ^ [1], Vogue Germany, 2 October 1997. Retrieved on 5 November 2014.
  10. ^ "The Quest for "it"". Retrieved 15 November 2015.
  11. ^ Ann Taylor’s 50th ANNiversary, 5 August 2004. Retrieved on 5 November 2014.
  12. ^ "Pantene Advertisements". Archived from the original on 23 September 2015. Retrieved 15 November 2015.
  13. ^ " Feed » Casting Coup". Retrieved 15 November 2015.
  14. ^ "L'Oreal Code Breaker Winter 2010 and Spring 2011 (L'Oreal)". Retrieved 15 November 2015.
  15. ^ Elite Model Management Paris. "Elite Model Management Paris". Elite Model Management Paris. Archived from the original on 7 December 2014. Retrieved 15 November 2015.
  16. ^ "Elite Model Management - Portfolio". Retrieved 15 November 2015.
  17. ^
  18. ^ "LATEST NEWS - Uno models Barcelona & Madrid". Archived from the original on 5 May 2012. Retrieved 15 November 2015.

External linksEdit