According to The Huffington Post, Bethann Hardison, a fashion activist and model recently wrote a letter to several high end fashion houses like Versace, Louis Vuitton, Alexander McQueen, Calvin Klein, Prada and Chanel about the lack of diversity on the runway.
In the letter, Hardison mentioned: “Eyes are on an industry that, season after season, watches design houses consistently use one or no models of color.”
This isn’t the first time Hardison has written a story about the racism in the fashion industry.
In September 2013 Hardison posted a memo about diversity on BalanceDiversity. com.
I have to say, Hardison is hitting the nail on the head with this issue.
I’ve witnessed what he’s complaining about enough to know that he is deadly accurate.
For example, VFiles Made Fashion F/W 2015 on YouTube featured at least 5 fashion houses: Andrea Jiapei Li, Julia Seemann, Ximon Lee, Discount Universe and VFiles Sport Plus.
In the entire fashion show, I counted just seven black models.
I am huge fan of VFiles. Their fashion is distinctive, artistic, diverse and free. I love it.
But it’s unfortunate that black models aren’t given the same opportunities to represent designers as white models are.
I appreciate the fact that Hardison took the initiative to speak on a known issue in the fashion industry.
There are many black people in the industry who actually have a voice but choose not to speak out.
For example, André Leon Talley, a former American editor for Vogue magazine, doesn’t speak up as often as he should about the lack of diversity in the fashion industry.
Talley is alumnus of N.C. Central University. Talley majored in French.
But he hasn’t given the Human Science department any recognition.
Being into fashion I’ve always noticed designers use few black models.
I believe it’s extremely selfish for designers to not provide black models a fair opportunity to embrace the art.
Designers use black models as fads — a temporary fashion. They use black models only when they’re “en vogue.”
The truth is this: black models are a crucial element of the fashion industry.