The #VogueChallenge Reimagines the Fashion Industry With More Representation

The viral #VogueChallenge has become a movement, with creatives across the world reimagining the magazine's covers to show more diversity.
By Jesse Goldstone Jun 19, 2020 10:00 PMTags
Related: Anna Wintour Apologizes for "Intolerant" Mistakes at "Vogue"

This is what Vogue could look like.

In the past few weeks, you might have noticed an influx of remixed Vogue covers popping up on social media from an array of creatives. The viral movement began on TikTok in mid-May but has since made its way across all areas of the Internet after Norway-based student and model Salma Noor tweeted a reimagined cover—shot by Angélique Culvinwith herself as the star.

After all, that's the whole concept. The #VogueChallenge invites diverse artists to put their own spin on what representation in Vogue can be. In the fashion bible's 125 years of existence, its only had one, yes one, Black photographer spearheading its shoots. Just 21 Black women have been featured on the covers, which also includes its sister publication Teen Vogue. And, in a June 4 statement to her staff, Anna Wintour acknowledged that the magazine has "not found enough ways" to support its Black employees. 

photos
Inspiring Moments from Black Lives Matter Protests

So, partially in response to Wintour's message regarding the racial disparities, several Black artists have highlighted their talents and bodies in conjunction with the iconic branding imagery. 

Take London-based photographer and art director Laré A, for example. "As a Black woman," she told E! News, "this resurgence has not only made me confident in my own voice, it has also reinvigorated me to be transparent about my experiences with the people around me and most importantly, not brushing things under the rug in the attempt to come across as 'feisty,' 'angry,' or 'aggressive.'"

After seeing the movement go viral, she didn't think twice about posting her own cover. "I knew straight away this wasn't just a challenge," she added. "We are tired of our roles being taken from us because of our skin colour. It was a chance for us to show the world that we are more than our struggles. We are talented, gifted and definitely cut from an excellent cloth."

@wisdm

Rising TikTok star Wisdom Kaye has always been a fashionable presence on the internet, but when he saw the #VogueChallenge he knew it was time to showcase his art. "I don't often do too many trends and I almost didn't do this one because all the challenges I was seeing were so good!" he said. "But I finally told myself that I can do a good job too so then I went ahead and slapped Vogue on all my pictures and chose the best ones."

Hoping to be a professional model and be a part of the fashion industry he believes "there are times when knocking isn't going to get you in, sometimes you have to kick the door down."

While the hashtag's intent was to amplify Black creators, many other creatives from culturally rich backgrounds have also joined the challenge to highlight the beauty of who they are and where they come.

Arielle Levy

After makeup artist and model Cas Jerome​ shared her portraits online, she told E!, "South Asian women make up a very small part of the mainstream media in America, but as people we are plenty. It is my role as a public figure in my community to call others to action to join the Black Lives Matter revolution."

"When I saw the Vogue challenge trending I was absolutely blown away," she continued. "The talent that is hidden in our black and non-black POC communities is just staggering."

Indeed, creatives hope this challenge is not seen as a trend, but the next step in the right direction towards representation.