Black Fashion Models and China
China is opening up their beauty market to western women, as long as the western women aren’t black.
Reported in the Washington Post 26 Dec 09, foreign models are going to China for work because of the demand. Ou Haibin, head of the Yuanjin Modeling Agency in Shenzhen said western models are almost always on short-term contracts and are paid a higher fee than Chinese models.
But when looking for foreign models they are always white. “Our clients don’t ask for black models,” he said. “It’s an issue of Chinese people’s aesthetic view.”
A part of me wants to be mad about it, but when I think about it Asian American fashion models hardly get a glance for superstar status. Yeah, there is Jenny Shimizu who rocks an androgynous look most of the time. And just this past fall Victoria’s Secret got their first AsAm model on the runway when Liu Wen walked it. Well, one and a half because Chanel Iman ripped the runway, too.
And truth be told, African American models have cycles when they are hot in the American fashion industry and for a while they haven’t been.
So it appears that we all have a way to go to appreciate the beauty of women who are of different hues. Then after that, we’ll go with weight and height. By 2050 it should all be resolved, or is that too soon?