Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to Vox.com, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.
Barneys New York hired photog Bruce Weber to shoot 17 transgendered models in its latest campaign, Brothers, Sisters, Sons and Daughters. In order to pull off the nontraditional feat, the retailer partnered with the National Center for Transgender Equality, and the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Community Center. It also plans to donate 10 percent of sales from its flagships and barneys.com on February 11 to the organizations.
Dennis Freedman, creative director of Barneys, attributes the concept to the underrepresentation of the transgender community. He told WWD that "such extraordinary progress has been made in the last few years for the lesbian, gay and bisexual community, but it's striking how the transgender community has been left behind. It's disturbing and upsetting to see that."
Fashion retailers hiring transgendered models has been done before. American Apparel featured model and America's Next Top Model alum Isis King for a t-shirt sale to honor LGBT Pride Month. And of course Andre Pejic, who identifies neither as man nor woman but "falls under the transgender umbrella," has been a fashion darling hired in countless runways and for as many ads. But never before has a mainstream department store (albeit the cool kid luxury one) created such a comprehensive campaign. The full spread includes a black-and-white photographs of each model, a 32-plate portfolio, several short films and a 15-minute video that will live on Barneys' Web site. The retailer also tapped Vanity Fair contributing editor Patricia Bosworth to write each of the 17 model's personal story.
· Barneys New York Taps Transgender Models [WWD]
· Karen Walker's Latest Campaign Highlights Kenyan Artisans [Racked]