Naomi Campbell’s decades-spanning career and impact as a supermodel defies labels, but now the British Fashion Council is officially recognising her outstanding contribution to the industry. At the Fashion Awards 2019 on December 2, the Vogue contributing editor will take home the Fashion Icon Award – one of the special recognition accolades that acknowledges individuals who have used the platform lent to them to effect positive change.
“This is a very emotional award to me, I feel blessed and humble,” Campbell told Vogue of the honour. “I would say an icon is someone who has a special aura, but also a presence and wisdom. I have always strived to give people from all backgrounds, all colour and cultures, courage through my words and my actions.”
Since scoring her first shoot a month before her 16th birthday (she signed to Synchro modelling agency at 15 after being scouted after school in Covent Garden), Campbell has pushed for better representation and equality on and off the catwalks. “I used to have to fight for the same fee as my [white] counterparts doing the same job,” she told Vogue in April. Now 49, she conceded that “it’s still not balanced completely”, but her global activist efforts, including the 2013 campaign “Diversity Coalition”, which aims to eliminate racism in fashion, are far from over. On her last birthday, she signed to a new agency, Models1.
Campbell began her philanthropic work with Nelson Mandela in 1993, and in 1997 he named her an “honorary granddaughter” for her endless drive for social change. In 2005, the south Londoner founded the charity Fashion For Relief, which organises fund-raising catwalk shows to aid victims of disasters worldwide, including Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and the Haiti earthquake in 2010. After touring the globe, Fashion For Relief will return to its roots – it was one of the major organisations to help people affected by the UK’s 2007 floods – during London Fashion Week in September.
“Naomi has made an incredible contribution to the fashion industry throughout her career as a supermodel, as well as through her global philanthropist work with charities and incredible fundraising efforts for a more diverse and equal future, especially in Africa,” Caroline Rush, BFC chief executive, told Vogue of Campbell’s Fashion Icon Award, which she looks forward to celebrating in December. “Naomi is an incredible ambassador for Africa, building bridges between nations and putting African designers at the forefront of the global fashion community through events such as ARISE Fashion Week in Lagos. She is an inspiration to many of us and has contributed through her career to change for the better.”
Campbell’s mission to push the envelope has seen her sit down with power players in a variety of fields, including Sadiq Khan and Jony Ive, for Vogue, which she first covered in 1987. She was the first black model on the front of French Vogue in 1988 and American Vogue in 1989. “When I was younger, in the 1980s and the 1990s, there were certain designers who hadn’t used models of colour in their shows,” she recalled to Vogue. “Christy Turlington and Linda Evangelista would say to them, ‘If you don’t take Naomi, then you don’t get us.’ My friends and comrades stuck up for me and I will never forget that. It is the reason why I’m always incredibly touched when young models of colour tell me that I have inspired them.” Nowadays, she counts exercise and her “healthy body for [her] healthy mind and healthy spirit”. “I know that what comes from within is projected outwards,” Campbell wrote via a personal essay in the July 2019 issue of Vogue.
“There has been so much written about her over the years, but I think many would be surprised to discover how loyal and generous she is,” wrote Edward Enninful in his March 2019 editor’s letter of Vogue, which Campbell covered. “As a friend, she is kind and very sensitive, yet at the same time she is a fighter – Jamaican, a buffalo soldier – who stands up for herself. To me, she will always be a legend, like the last of the silent movie stars: Greta Garbo, Marlene Dietrich, Naomi Campbell. With all the flashbulbs, the fashion, the entourages, the jets, the philanthropy, the red carpets and the world leaders on speed dial, she seems to live at twice the pace of the rest of us. All the clichés genuinely do apply to Naomi – you could not make her up and she really is larger than life.”
With a catalogue of campaigns – her portfolio is a veritable A-Z of household-name brands from Chanel to Louis Vuitton, Valentino and Versace – and list of industry accolades – including the Special Recognition Award at the British Fashion Awards 2010 and the CFDA 2018 Fashion Icon Award – already under her belt, Campbell doesn’t need another statuette. The world can see her icon status already radiates from the inside and out.
“I wouldn’t never change a thing,” she mused on the advice she would give her younger self. “I would say to young Naomi, ‘Don’t be afraid to speak out about issues, especially when you come across things like inequality and racism. Make sure your voice is always heard. At the same time, stay focused on whatever you’re doing and give the very best. However big or small the occasion, you never know who is out there.’”
With 34 Years in the Modeling Industry, Naomi Campbell is Teaching Us All How to Win at Life.
Naomi Campbell broke into the modeling industry at a time when black models were not recognized, and she has managed to stay relevant for decades.
34 years after, she’s offering some sage advice to everyone of us on how to navigate life.
The stunning model took to her Instagram to celebrate her journey so far by sharing a throwback photo from one of her first modelling gigs.
34 years of modeling, love, growth, friendship, wisdom, joy, pain, loss, experience, fun, laughter and so much more. You have got to love what you do, love it everyday, through highs and the lows, the wins and the losses…I can honestly say I love what I do and thank you all for being here with me every step of the way.
Sanitation Ambassador & Model, Araba Sey, Featured On Covid-19 Issue Of Moziak Magazine
GREATER ACCRA – Tuesday, April 14, 2020/www.gbafrica.net/ – Ghana Beach Soccer Sanitation Ambassador Miss Araba Sey, has been chosen to front the cover of South African Magazine Moziak which featured other African stars including Davido,Patoranking and Victor Ad.
Miss Sey has been a leading environmental activist and Sanitation/Hygiene campaigner for Ghana Beach Soccer before she was officially appointed as an Ambassador in September 2019.
Her work has covered both coastal regions and mainland Ghana where she engages children, the youth and adults in practical ways of keeping themselves and their environments clean, hygienic and sanitized.
“On behalf of Ghana Beach Soccer, stakeholders and our partners we say a big Ayekoo to Miss Araba Sey. We’re proud of you as our dedicated Ambassador and role model.”
DAILY PAPER/ Amsterdam-based Streetwear Brand Allies Ghanaian Artist, David Alabo, For New Collection
AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS, March 31, 2020/www.gbafrica.net/ – Amsterdam-based, African-owned streetwear brand, Daily Paper (men’s wear and women’s wear fashion brand established in 2012), has, in collaboration with Ghanaian visual artist David Alabo, premiered its limited edition capsule, “The Tarot Card” collection of high end t-shirts which is part of the brand’s Spring/Summer 2020 collection.
Categorically, the t-shirt features a unique design by Alabo “highlighting an Afro-Surrealism tarot card providing insight and guidance through symbolism and spiritual wisdom,” according to a press release from Daily Paper. The designs reflect Alabo’s artistic vision of using elements of fantasy and mysticism to critique African society.
Each item in the capsule collection features a unique tarot card design with a symbolic meaning. “The Magician” for instance, represents “spiritual development,” while “The High Priestess” design reflects “intuition, mystery, and sensuality.” The contemporary fashion brand is known for its ready-to-wear garments and accessories.
Daily Paper is inspired by the African heritage of its own founders, together with the passion for contemporary fashion, Daily Paper is known for its ready-to-wear garments and accessories, and is dedicated to promoting African culture by honoring the past and its influence on their vision of the future.
According to David Alabo, who lauded the efforts of the Amsterdam-based, African-owned streetwear brand, which is inspired by the African heritage of its own founders, for an marvellous collaboration revealed that, his aim in the art world is to push the boundaries and challenge the perception of Africa with fashion.
The company was founded by three friends, Hussein Suleiman, Jefferson Osei and Abderrahmane Trabsini. In the beginning the trio set up a blog whereby they occasionally sold T-shirts bearing their logo. The company subsequently grew and amplified into a major trendsetter. Although the blog was running in 2008, the company was founded in 2010 and established in 2012.
In 2015 they released a women’s clothing parallel. They particularly derived their design ideas from scenery in Kenya and other sub-Saharan African regions. In the same year, they branched out to diversify from casual wear to athletic and sportswear. In May 2015 they began releasing limited edition silhouette jackets.
Daily Paper has made it a point to collaborate with African artists and creatives. Last year, the brand linked with Nigerian superstar Wizkid for the limited edition STARBOY collection.
Victoria Michaels Appointed To Co-Chair Africa Fashion International (AFI) Fashion Week 2020.
International Model and Founder of Fashion Connect Africa (FCA), Victoria Michaels have been announced as the co-chair of the prestigious Africa Fashion International (AFI) Fashion Week 2020 under the theme – Designing Africa’s Future.
Victoria was chosen based on her tremendous contribution towards the growth of the Fashion industry and the incredible work she continues to do in supporting the Youth, women and the girl child.
AFI Fashion Week is scheduled to take place from the 12th to the 14th of March 2020 at the Cape Town International Convention Centre. At this year’s Fashion Week, AFI seeks to empower, educate and entertain its audience with a goal of promoting and retailing refined accessories and apparels during the event.
Victoria Michaels is a model, philanthropist, social change advocate and an entrepreneur. She is currently the CEO of VM Consult and Fashion Connect Africa and leads The African Literacy Development Initiative (ALDI) and the Victoria Michaels Foundation.
As a model, Victoria has been featured in major publications such as CANOE, Vogue, Italia, Cosmopolitan, Glitz Africa, ROOTS , Africa Fashion Week, London Magazine, Glam Africa, Destiny, Women & Home, Elle, Enjoy Magazine among others. She has also received numerous accolades and awards including Glitz Africa 2016 & 2018 Model of the year award, Eminence Awards Africa – Distinguished Eminent Model 2017, Ghana Fashion Awards best Classic Female Model 2018 and so on.
As a social change advocate, Victoria Michaels established the Victoria Michaels Foundation a non-profit organization seeking to empower women and less privileged children across Africa to discover their potentials and deploy it for greater society use. Victoria has also used the Africa Literacy Development Initiative (ALDI) as a mechanism geared towards helping underserved and marginalized communities in Africa have access to transformational education through a number of literacy projects.
The VM Foundation and ALDI, has been able to donate libraries, book boxes, refurbished 1st and 2nd Cycle schools (built classroom blocks, libraries stocked with books, administration areas and teachers common rooms) to schools and communities who lack the basic amenities to ensure a child has access to basic education.
Finally, within the Fashion and the advocacy space, Victoria continues to be a beacon of light to so many people around the world and particularly in Africa where the impact of her work is felt on the lives that she is changing through her initiatives. She most recently started Fashion Connect Africa (FCA), an organization that seeks to promote African peace, unity and creative spirit and whose platform is designed to give global exposure and opportunity to the African Fashion creative regardless of where they are in Africa or its diaspora.
African Fashion International was founded by Dr Precious Moloi Motsepe and is one of the biggest showcase platforms for designers of African origin.
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