This isn’t much of a surprise to me, but that doesn’t mean the topic shouldn’t be discussed. When white runs an industry it has a tendency to look white. Leomie really hits the nail on the head at the end.
That being said I think that their have been some advances. I’m not exactly a expert of the racial history of the fashion industry, but I thought that the fact Louis Vuitton did a collaboration with a highly outspoken black rapper was a progressive step. I can’t co-sign hot pink sneakers however.
Plus I’m bored with white b*tches. Spicy chicks all day. Makes me think of a nifty rap song Laws did.
Leomie Anderson told The Guardian:
- “It’s a lot harder to start a black girl than a white girl, for a number of reasons,” says Carole White, Premier’s founder. “There’s not so much work for them, and sometimes photographers and makeup artists are scared. They don’t know how to light or make them up properly so it takes a lot longer . . . It’s a slower process.”Is the fashion industry racist? “I don’t think the industry is any more racist than anywhere else,” says White. “It’s driven by what sells and, in general, white blonde girls sell, that’s the mindset. In actual fact, black girls do sell but they’re not given as many openings. It is safer to go with a white girl, and in a recession people are very conservative.”
Model Booker Annie Wilshaw had some even stronger words.
- “Yes, I’d say the industry is racist. In Milan black girls never work. In Paris it’s still the same. It’s 2011 and that’s quite disgusting, really.”Wilshaw continues: “When the client sends you a brief you know straight away they’re not talking about a black girl. They say they want ‘a girl with long hair, who looks like a fairy’ or something. When they want a black girl, they will say ‘looking for mixed-race girl, tribal-prints location, desert scene’.”It really bores me when photographers shoot black girls the same way, with a tribal print and some bright eye-shadow going on. Come on, that was Alek Wek in the 1990s, do something different.”
“I explained to Leomie when we took her on that she won’t get the options as easily as the white girls, because it’s true, it’s so much harder to develop the black girls. She has to work twice as hard to get picked up on,” says Wilshaw.
Then Leomie Anderson hits the nail on the f*cking head:
- “How can you expect fashion not to be slightly racist when the world is still racist? There’s racism and prejudice in every aspect of life, so yes, fashion probably is a bit racist,”