Black model Deddeh Howard reproduces fashion campaigns to shine a light on diversity
This model is on a mission to end the fashion industry’s whitewash — one iconic image at a time.
Model Deddeh Howard has recreated classic fashion campaigns to highlight the lack of blacks at the top of the modeling pantheon.
Her project, called “Black Mirror,” takes famous ads featuring such stars as Kendall Jenner, Gisele Bundchen, Gigi Hadid and Kate Moss — then recreates them perfectly with Howard as the supermodel.
“Black people are too often in the media for being underrepresented at important events such as the Oscars or make headlines for being targeted by the police,” Howard writes on her website, (so) “I felt it was time to do something positive and inspiring about my race.”
She’s no doubt onto something. The Fashion Spot, a trends website, reported that 75% of the 8,727 models who worked the runways in the New York, London, Paris and Milan fall fashion shows were white. That’s a tiny improvement from one year earlier, when 80% were white.
Despite the need to diversity the mannequin world, Howard says that when she applies to modeling agencies she is almost always rejected on the grounds that the agency already has a black model.
Her photo recreations, shot by Raffael Dickreuter, may change some minds.
The shoots were not without their difficulties, however.
“The most challenging photo to recreate was the Gigi Hadid Guess campaign,” Howard told the Daily News, referring to the trouble she had finding a rare 1939 Indian Chief.
“To figure out the motorcycle and then actually track down one was a real challenge,” she said.