The fashion industry is by no means all bad, but it does have its moments of being incredibly tone-deaf and out-of-touch, and the latest comes inside the pages of Numéro‘s March issue, which features an “African Queen” editorial. But instead of, you know, hiring a black model, the magazine painted a white model in blackface.
Sixteen-year-old Ondria Hardin, who was involved in Vogue‘s underage model scandal, sports a deep, deep tan in the spread, along with printed ensembles that are obviously styled to portray a colonial-era “African Queen”. It’s weird to think that no one involved with the shoot thought to step back and wonder if putting a white model in blackface would be offensive — because it is, has been, and always will be.
Jezebel points out that Ford Models, the agency that reps Hardin, also has a handful of black models on its roster — all of whom could have fit the spread’s theme better than the North Carolinia teen. We guess we really shouldn’t be too surprised at this spread. After all, the mag toed the line two years ago with a questionable Constance Jablonski shoot.