Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Since forever now there has always been a handful of black models that grace designer runways and famed fashion magazine covers. Liya Kebede,Iman Abdulmajid, Naomi Campbell, Alek Wek and my new fav Chanel Iman and of course Tyra Banks are all well known. These women are known because there is a lack of minority models in fashion around the world. Why?
Why can't Black, Asian, Middle Eastern, Indian and Hispanic models be as regular as any Caucasian model seen on a magazine or runway! It is almost unspoken, as if the problem doesn't exist. When Vogue put out their all black Italian issue I was outraged! ONE ALL BLACK issue... that's a shame that having black models appear throughout a Vogue magazine is such a rarity that having an all black issue caused the magazine to sell out within minutes! [The Italian Vogue editor Franca Sozzani and photographer Steven Meisel spoke about the project; Sozzani was inspired by Barack Obama's campaign and the lack of diversity on the runways, while Meisel has been frustrated by the industry's rejection of black models for quite some time.] http://nymag.com/daily/fashion/2008/06/uveiled_italian_vogues_allblac_1.html
I feel that you, as a society, and I have a certain comfort in seeing white models on the magazines we read and billboards we see. Its "normal" so it's comfortable, and when we see anything other than a white model, it catches our attention either negatively or positively. Now how are we going to change this? With ONE issue of Vogue that was not even intended for the United States? I don't think so, and as Iman stated on NY mag ( http://nymag.com/daily/fashion/2008/05/iman_doesnt_want_black_models.html )...in 2007 black models were "nonexistent" and the fashion and beauty industries are out of touch. The fashion industry need to to get with it, black is beautiful and so is Asian, Hispanic, White and purple, AND green!!!
Posted by Sabrielle Lezeau