The September Issue
I decided to do a little experiment on diversity in the fashion world...
I took this huge 2015 September Issue of Vogue and created three piles:
#1: Pages with only white-appearing models on either side.
#2: Pages with a mixture of white-appearing and non-white models.
#3: Pages with only non-white models on either side.
The result: An extremely huge bias toward white-looking models.
Pile #1 (well over 200 double-sided pages) had over twice as many pages as Pile #2. Pile #3 contained only about 10% of total pages.
I don’t think I need to say that systemic racism is alive and well, and that we still need to address it in ourselves. I don’t think I need to say that the lack of representation, respect, and opportunity for non-white people is a real issue (not to mention non-skinny, non-cis, and everything else). There shouldn’t be debate about that.
What I will say, I’ll express from the perspective of an artist: I hope that visual artists, designers, and creators of all kinds can see that their clinging to whiteness, sameness, and stereotypical beauty is unbecoming, outdated, and futile. The world is evolving and diversifying and melding. Any creator with a sense of vision should know and embrace that. Be a step ahead instead of stuck in the past. It’s not good enough anymore.