Thursday, June 19, 2008

One Giant Step for Mankind

Interesting article in the Style section of today's New York Times. Italian Vogue has decided to feature only black models in the pictorials as well as articles and features on prominent blacks. The reasons behind the issue are featured in the article but it begs a huge question. Why Italian Vogue? It's not like there is a huge black population in Italy (or is there?). I think its aimed more towards the Italian fashion industry and the other insiders who read every international edition of the magazine.

Heck, even I'm thinking of buying the magazine and I don't read or speak Italian. What's even more interesting is that apparently American Vogue has an article in their July issue about how there is a dearth of black models being used in the fashion industry. Hmm, wouldn't it have been better if instead they had decided to use them in the fashion editorials instead? I'm really excited though about the fact that Steven Meisel who is the photographer for the editorial decided to use Toccara Jones from America's Next Top Model as one of the models. It's probably the biggest coup that a non-winner let alone a winner has had to date. And he had to fight to use her because she's full-figured!

I would love to see Mode on Ugly Betty tackle something like this since Wilhemina (who is African-American) is now the editor in chief of the magazine, which has to be a coup. I hope they don't slack on how revolutionary it is to have her at the helm. The New York Times ran an article in the fall about the dearth of black models on the runways during fashion week. I think its an interesting topic.

Keep warm (the temperature has dropped here),



La Belle Americaine said...

You know what? I never even thought about Wilhelmina being a black editor in chief of a fashion magazine and how, as you said, revolutionary it is. But Hollywood does suffer from the same thing that cripples the fashion industry, so it's kind of a given that little attention is paid to the lack of diversity in both industries.

Elizabeth Kerri Mahon said...

It wasn't until I read the article in The New York Times that it dawned on me how far ahead Mode was compared to real life editors (I think Anna Wintour has been editor of Vogue now for almost 20 years!). Heck even having Daniel as an editor was kind of revolutionary because there hasn't been a male editor of Vogue really since the first issues in 1893.