“They automatically think I’m from Africa or Somalia!” she criticizes of the fashion industry, which she says immediately dismisses her as, “‘Oh, You’re a black girl!'”
Of being compared to black modeling greats Grace Jones and Iman, Lopez says, “That’s awesome. Are you kidding me? Me? I’m just me–I’m just this little dork!”
In a video diary for the New York Daily News, Lopez chronicles her first full day at fashion week last Friday from a fitting for Marc Jacobs to walking for Jason Wu.
“I have fairly small feet for a model so I always run into shoe troubles,” the 20-year-old model confesses. “I’m stuffed in and taped and glued down but that doesn’t really help. At every show my heart is in my throat right before I walk out.”
It seems another one of the pretty black faces featured in Vogue Italia‘s Black issue is getting work: African-American model Sessillee Lopez has landed in the print ads of Calvin Klein’s CK One campaign, shot by Steven Meisel.
In her spot, she’s photographed canoodling a hot white model with the tag line, “We Are One,” serving us de ja vu: Wasn’t it only a few weeks ago that Blindie reported on Banana Republic featuring an interracial couple in its latest ad campaign?
In case you didn’t get your hands on the July issue of the “all-black” Italian Vogue, Conde Nast is rushing out 400,000 more copies of the fashion mag to meet the overwhelming demand.
With covers featuring Liya Kebede, Sessilee Lopez, Jourdan Dunn and Naomi Campbell, the extremely well-received black issue shoots down the assumption held within the publishing industry that black faces don’t sell magazines.
Blindie just hopes Italian Vogue‘s attempt at showcasing black talent in the fashion world isn’t viewed as “a collectors’ edition, a one-off, a novelty”, as the editor of Let Them Eat Cake magazine Nijide Ugboma warns in an article for The Observer.
Italian Vogue painted their entire issue black: devoting their July issue to black models and issues showing up American Vogue who dared ask the question “Is Fashion Racist?” in their July issue, then dedicated a paltry spread to a mere three models—Chanel Iman, Jourdan Dunn and Arlenis Sosa.
“Mine is not a magazine that can be accused of not using black girls,” editor Franca Sozzani, who has put Naomi Campbell, Liya Kebede and Alek Wek on her covers, told the New York Times.
“Franca doesn’t realize what she’s done for people of color,” Naomi Campbell said. “It reminds me of Yves [Saint Laurent] using all the black models.”