French Vogue Does Blackface: Racist or Edgy?

Hey Glamazons,

Just as models of color begin to make strides in the industry, French Vogue releases a controversial shoot with model Lara Stone in Blackface for their supermodel issue via Jezebel Magazine. Photographed by Steven Klein, the spread has proven to be controversial as blackface, a popular minstrel act in the 19th century, was implemented to humiliate, subjugate and perpetuate dangerous stereotypes about African-Americans.

What I find more troubling is the fact that French Vogue chose to use blackface instead of an actual black model for this shoot, particularly since models of color are notoriously overlooked for editorial shoots, ad campaigns and runway appearances.

Furthermore, not a single woman of color appears in the entire supermodel issue but I suppose, Lara Stone's painted face represents diversity. (Sarcasm)

See images from the spread below and let me know what you think: is French Vogue's decision to shoot Lara Stone in Blackface racist? Is the controversy surrounding the shoot justified? Do you think French Vogue painted Lara Stone in Blackface to avoid using an actual black model? Does this shoot satirize African heritage and culture? Was it simply a misguided attempt to appear edgy or creative with no racial significance?





Amber Jaye said...

I am disgusted, but not surprised. Part of me wonders, are companies doing things like these just to create controversy and get in the press?

Anonymous said...

It's not edgy, it's ignorant. How hard would it have been to simply use a Black model?

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