The Face of Fashion

We live in a rich culture of diversity, yet there are many people who are not visually represented within our media, excluded for size, individuality, health, ethnicity or sexuality. This project focuses on the lack of ethnicity within the fashion industry.

Every model agency has a token black girl, or maybe two. An unspoken quota that they won’t exceed because they don’t believe there is a market for non-white models. The few non-white models that have made it in the fashion industry are almost white in bone structure and facial features. If it were not for the colour of their skin, they would be seen as white. It is also true that in post-production ethnic models often have their skin whitened. In many places throughout the world, skin whitening products (that often contain bleach) are heavily sold and they often promote the idea that having whiter skin can lead to a happier, more successful life.

I’ve created a parody of a beauty shot as used by the fashion industry, focusing on the face as an expression of people’s identity. The white stands as a symbol to show a false and forced whiteness. The faces and expressions show them as individuals, but they also reflect a passive acceptance that represents our society today.