Vanity Fair Hires A Black Photographer To Shoot Cover For The First Time

Vanity Fair Hires A Black Photographer To Shoot Cover For The First Time
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In the same week that Vogue was condemned for failing to choose a black photographer to shoot its latest cover, fashion magazine Vanity Fair has hired a black photographer to shoot its cover for the first time in the magazine’s 106-year history.

The magazine has just launched its July/August 2020 cover story, titled “My Entire Life Has Been a Protest” in response to the #BlackLivesMatter protests in recent months.

The cover, which features famous actor Viola Davis, was shot by fashion photographer Dario Calmese.

“To the best of our knowledge, it is the first Vanity Fair cover made by a Black photographer,” Vanity Fair editor Radhika Jones wrote in her July-August editor’s letter.

“Thank you @violadavis for being my co-conspirator. Thank you @vanityfair @kirapollack @_tara_johnson @michaeljkramer @radhikajones and art director @natmatsky for this opportunity & for believing in my vision. Thank you to every black woman who’s felt invisible despite being on the front line of every fight. We see you. You are loved, you are powerful, and you are beautiful. This is for you,” Calmese said in an Instagram post showing the latest cover.

In an interview with The New York Times, Calmese said that while he wasn’t certain he was the first black photographer to shoot the cover of the prestigious magazine, he understood the significance of the moment.

“I did know that this was a moment to say something,” he told the paper. “I knew this was a moment to be, like, extra Black.”

The shoot was based on an 1863 photograph of an enslaved man with whip marks on his back.

 

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