Numero’s Racist “African Queen” Editorial Stars White Model Ondria Hardin in Blackface
Well this is just stupidly racist: Numero cast 16-year-old white model Ondria Hardin in an editorial called "African Queen" and um, "styled" her in blackface for the shoot. (Originally spotted by Foudre.)
This, of course, would have been a nice opportunity to hire a black model, as there aren't many jobs available for non-white models (as Jezebel pointed out, 82 percent of the models at New York Fashion Week this season were white) and some might argue (I would argue) that the lack of racial diversity in the fashion industry promotes a standard of beauty which verges on (slash is) white supremacist.
But no. It's better to hire a white model and have her wearing blackface. And then have her pose in an editorial which fetishizes and objectifies the cultural heritage of the models you didn't hire.
Controversy has dogged Hardin since the beginning of her career: At 14, the young model was the face of Prada and included Ford Models' show package. Last year, the 15-year-old walked for Marc Jacobs and was featured in Chanel's Spring 2013 campaign, violating an industry-wide effort to improve working conditions for models by casting only over-16 girls. “She doesn’t look 15. She looks 18 or 19,” Karl Lagerfeld said (infuriatingly), failing to explain why he didn't just hire an 18-year-old instead.
It's only a matter of time before someone puts Hardin in a padded bodysuit and casts her in a plus-size ad.