editorialesque » controversy with daria werbowy for interview

by Jeremy Danté

what yo’ name iz? oraine barrett, daria werbowy, raschelle osbourne, sebene blake,
david agbodji, salieu jalloh, armando cabral, adesuwa aigheni, carmelita mendes,
manuel ramos, kelly moreira, rafton glean, peter giang, dorian cobb,
lisalla montenegro, pablo contreras, ajak deng

shot by mikael jan, supermodel daria werbowy appears for the may issue of interview magazine, surrounded black models. while excited about the beauty of the images & the showcase in which models of color were given initially, i still sit here with a sense of discomfort. a large reason for the creation of this blog was not only to have a dialogue about fashion but to document the changes & evolution of how beauty is projected from the runway to glossed publications. while its no secret, a large intent of what is covered is aimed at showcasing models of color. in the time it takes me to gather content specifically aimed toward what i am able to respond to, color still has a very bleek existence. from campaign debuts to who opened the runway show; while color has begun to trickle into fashion in the forefront, i still struggle with the idea that it is being embraced with permanence. case in point the spread seen here; we see some of my favorites salieu jalloh, dorian cobb, david agbodji, manuel ramos, oraine barrett & a slew of new black faces. my issue is not with the image quality, i dont have any negative marks with styling nor the lighting. rather, i have an issue with the cast & the one standout of the bunch. daria werbowy appears to be the only female of non-black descent; making it seem like each of the black models are props. just as we see the bar, the cars & records on the wall- its as if each model is used as a filler to highlight daria. why not remove her & make it entirely black? while i can fully appreciate contrast, i feel like there are some harsh undertones here. i feel like this makes it feel as though black & being black is ‘of the moment’ when in fact, for many, present company included- color & being of color is very much a permanent state. the images are amazing, but the decesion to cast in this way & how it is seen makes me take a closer look & when close, im not sure if i like what i see. beyond model identification, past what agency is representing who or which model chick is on top- the goal here is to identify beauty, question direction & challenge perception.

imagesource | tfs