MINT STANFORD UNIVERSITY
STYLE & CULTURE
FALL 2017 1
2Photo by Noah Hornik
LETTER FROM THE EDITORS
Dear Reader, This fall crisply breathed new life into the magazine. With a stellar cast of fresh directors, writers, photographers, and more joining us, we’re elated to bring you the fruits of our harvest. In this issue, we are thinking about: the meaning of the color “nude,” gender, and the expression of identity through clothing. Our cover’s background hue invokes inquiry of the term “nude.” Diving inside the magazine, you will find that the makeup industry’s growing attention to a wider range of skin tones does not go unnoticed—or without critique—in our article “The Gold Standard.” We feature Brazilian artist Angélica Dass’s photography project Humanae, which meticulously tags each unique shade of nude on thousands of individuals. Our exclusive interview with Dass herself led to the inspiration for our cover artwork. Thinking about gender, we are excited to feature femme and POC student DJs on campus and to examine the rise of the femme male model. As for identity, we chronicle hijabi fashion and representation, and take a deep dive into the life and fashion influences of artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. Visually, we peer into Stanford culture with the satirical series “(eom.),” meaning end of message. Our “Fall Street Style” spread shows how students came back to campus this autumn with an edge. Finally, our editorial “Give Face” marks the re-emergence of drag at Stanford. Documenting and facilitating the emergence of marginalized groups in fashion and culture is the mission we fiercely take on in this issue. We hope you enjoy. Ashley Overbeek, Iman Floyd-Carroll, Becky Aydin, Divine Edem MINT Editors-in-Chief
CREATIVE DIRECTOR tyler SU DESIGN DIRECTOR phoebe YAO DESIGN EDITORS nova MEURICE gopal RAMAN DESIGNERS arkira CHANTARATANANOND eunice JUNG caitlin KLAUER EVENTS DIRECTOR eilaf OSMAN MANAGING DIRECTOR elizabeth GERSON MODELING DIRECTOR autumn GRECO PHOTOGRAPHY DIRECTOR iman FLOYD-CARROLL SOCIAL MEDIA DIRECTOR carlos BUSTOS emily CHAO WEB DIRECTOR mirna EL-KHALILY jackie ENNIS annie NG WRITING DIRECTOR divine EDEM becky AYDIN FINANCIAL OFFICER olivia GREGORY
EDITORS-IN-CHIEF ashley OVERBEEK divine EDEM becky AYDIN iman FLOYD-CARROLL
SPONSORSHIPS sean HOWARD
in this IN THIS
ISSUE give face 8 femme x POC DJs 16 the immortal Jean-Michel Basquiat 26 weâ€™re all one colorful family 32 the gold standard 40 the new breakfast club 46 why femme male models mean everything 58 growing visibility: hijab takeover 64 (eom.) 66 fall street style 76
GIVE FACE Photographed by Anna Carroll and Marathodi Nsteane Modeled by Maddie Bouton and Phoebe Oathout A cohesive drag scene on Stanford’s campus has been almost non-existent for a year. The Stanford Freeks theater group began the year with the goal of bringing back Stanford drag as a creative outlet for students. The Freeks’ leadership is comprised of trans and gender
nonconforming people whose lived experience and culture is represented in Bay Area drag. Princess the Apocalypse (Phoebe Oathout ‘18) and Missqué (Maddie Bouton ‘18) began ambitiously, hosting their first drag show this fall, “Give Face: A Very Innocent Affair”.
CAMPUS SPOTLIGHT T he image of white guys making beats on a laptop dominates mainstream DJ discourse. Popular artists such as The Chainsmokers and Daft Punk reflect this demographic of professional DJs, so it is not surprising that DJs on university campuses follow suit. It can become easy to forget that the art and history of DJing have a deep narrative of carving space for counter-cultural creatives and their communities, especially queer individuals and people of color. To shed light on this typically marginalized area of DJing, MINT interviewed four femme and femme POC student DJs here at Stanford: Anna Tskhovrebov ’17, M.A. ‘18, Amanda Cooke ‘20, Phoebe Oathout ‘18,
and Kemi Lijadu ’17, M.A. ‘18. Spinning on the ones and twos, these rad femmes overturn the conventionally white, male, and cis-gendered space of student music production. Through our conversations, it became apparent that the collaborative nature of Stanford’s cooperative houses, like Enchanted Broccoli Forest (EBF) and Kairos, reflects artists’ eagerness to share their craft with new learners. Performances at Kairos’ biweekly Wine & Cheese event and EBF’s weekly Happy Hour provide opportunities for student DJs to showcase unique sounds. Furthermore, a cascade of apprenticeship among student DJs culminates in an enhanced visibility of minority DJs on Stanford’s campus.
FEMME X POC
Written by Zoe Mhungu Photographed by Sarah Ohta and Iman Floyd-Carroll Modeled by Phoebe Oathout, Amanda Cooke, Anna Tskhovrebov, and Kemi Lijadu
ANNA TSKHOVREBOV as VIEWFINDER Anna describes her music as, “hypnotic, dark techno with break beats and acid sounds.” She lived in the co-ops Synergy and 576 Alvarado Row during her undergraduate years. Tskhovrebov is co-terming in music, science, and technology. Mint Magazine (MM): Can you talk more about how you started DJing? Anna Tskhovrebov (AT): I’ve been a musician my whole life... but it was always something I was doing on the side…While I was in Berlin, I realized how many people there take art much more seriously than in other parts of the world. It was totally an OK thing to have your life be completely devoted to creative endeavors. Music was taken much more seriously. Going to the club in Berlin isn’t about getting wasted on a Friday night...it’s about going there, potentially completely sober, and experiencing the music for ten hours at a time. Then I came back. I had been a part of the co-op community for a couple years and started reaching out to my friends who were social managers and just asked ‘Hey, do you have any events coming up?’ My first DJ gig was at EBF. I played my first gig in the city (this fall) at F8. MM: How do you feel being femme impacts the way people receive your music? AT: At Stanford, it was never a thing that I thought about. All the people booking me were female, all the other people playing were femme or a minority. But, in SF, people are a bit skeptical. It kind of works for my benefit ‘cause when I kill it, they’re like “wow, holy shit.” It’s also true that people expect a certain sound from a woman, especially in techno. I’m trying to break down those traditional expectations and also play differently from anyone else. I’m not trying to conform to either one of those gendered roles. I also try to shy away from saying, ‘I don’t play like a girl..my music is slammin,’ ‘cause girls can do that. I am a girl, doing that. MM: Any specific words you would use to describe your aesthetic? AT: I wear a lot of black with light washed denim…I dress very androgynously...somewhat intentionally, but also somewhat because that’s just what seems comfortable to me. I like to play with texture more than color. When I go out, it’s a combination of black silk, black velvet, black lace, and black denim.
AMANDA COOKE as DJ AMANDA ROSE Cooke had an early exposure to music by making mixes for her dance teams. She recounts being “into music” and “setting the vibe.” Back in her hometown of Broward County, Florida, she found that most people don’t teach their craft. Once at Stanford, a friend put her in touch with Lijadu, who also is featured in this interview; Cooke would learn from Lijadu at EBF. Mint Magazine (MM): What types of music do you put in your sets? Amanda Cooke (AC): I play late 90s, early 2000s hip-hop, aggressive rap, and dancehall—which comes from my Jamaican heritage. I also like to play hip-hop that’s not mainstream. I’m really feeling Brockhampton. I’m really feeling some Tyler the Creator. I’m just feeling songs not on the radio or that you’re gonna hear at every party. MM: How has being femme and a racial minority impacted the way people receive your sets? AC: When there’s a lot of people I don’t identify with racially or culturally in the crowd, it’s a line where (I ask myself ), am I gonna play for them? Am I going to play music that they like so they stay? Or am I going to stay true to my style? On the femme spectrum, I feel it when I have to set up. Guys mansplain. I got to a point where I’m not bothered by it. I feel like for me actually playing, there (are) so many femme DJs (here) that I haven’t felt a negative impact. But, I haven’t DJed at home. Back home is notorious for hyping up female DJs based on their looks. You can be trash, but if you’re cute, you’re getting bookings everywhere and you can be literally garbage. People have reached out to me at home, but it’s always started with them flirting with me. MM: How has your sound developed over time? AC: Making transitions smoother, more appealing to the ear. I still haven’t mastered, which is sucky, but oh well. Finding new songs and not being afraid to do something out of the box. If you have a song that you fuck with, and you’re not getting the same reaction from the crowd… don’t change it or second guess yourself. Being more confident in my music and choices. At Kairos’ Wine and Cheese or EBF, people might not solely be there for the music. They could be there for the community, which allows you to experiment more.
PHOEBE OATHOUT as PRINCESS THE APOCALYPSE Oathout studied abroad in Berlin, where she tapped into the city’s culture of house, techno, and disco music. Oathout was especially attracted to disco, given its connections to queer and trans communities, saying, “I love how disco encourages people to serve looks and it’s just awesome to dance too. It talks about really incredible themes. Like, overcoming some bullshit thing or I’m gonna be so happy in this moment. The really political aspects of it are often not talked about.” MM: What are some of the most memorable sets that you’ve played? PO: (A) happy hour (this fall) was really memorable for me. I had these two babies tapped to my breasts, and, in my mind, I was communicating about fertility. One thing that had been on my mind a lot was women telling me all the time, “the most important moment in any woman’s life is when she gives birth.” As a trans woman, that’s a soft form of violence done against me. MM: Can you talk about what EBF Happy Hour means to you? PO: The first time I ever played for a large group of people was my first rebirth day, the first year after my transition started. I had friends in EBF...and my rebirthday happened to fall on a Happy Hour. They were like “wow, we would love to celebrate this thing.” People who come from marginalized identities, anytime you’re told, “I recognize this thing is hard and go you,”... it means so much. I got to play music that I love for so many people on an important day. EBF is always, really awesomely, a community that is observant of what groups on this campus are not getting social spaces that they deserve, and how can we throw them in one of the biggest things to happen on campus. MM: How has your art practice added to you discovering self-care? PO: When I first started learning how to mix, it was me and a friend, who was really taking care of me, mixing together. It gave us a collaboration to do while I was talking and venting. One thing that’s so undervalued is people mixing together. It’s a really intimate thing to do. Sharing that space with someone was a really important form of self-care to me. Now when I DJ, it’s a combination of things I love: drag, living transness and gender nonconformity. When you’re playing in a room you feel valued you feel recognized. You feel real. This beauty I have I know is real, and I’m not going to let that go away. MM: What words would you use to describe your aesthetic? PO: Princess the Apocalypse is totally about being glamorous but also trying to be freaky. She is honestly kind of a hippie. She 100 percent of the time knows that she’s beautiful. There’s this super long, multi-colored rainbow skirt that is ridiculous and fun. The best thing about it is that it could be flipped. Princess the Apocalypse is all about taking systems that have been used to hurt me in the past. It’s really confrontational and it’s weird. Phoebe dresses business professional. Phoebe is all about curation of herself.
KEMI LIJADU as THE KEMIST Kemi Lijadu completed her undergraduate education in Philosophy, Public Policy, and African Studies. Currently, she is co-terming in Philosophy. Lijadu remembers that seeing other female DJs at EBF Happy Hours allowed her to realize that “I can do that too.” She recalls during her sophomore year, there were a lot of DJs in EBF; she borrowed her friend Ali’s DJ set. Lijadu cites an “extra pressure to be outstanding” and that “often people are surprised that I’m a good DJ.” But, none of this bothers her, as she says that, “doesn’t get me down. My music is going to speak for itself.” Like Cooke, Lijadu has noticed that she has been spoken down to while setting up her own equipment. “Men assume I don’t know how to set stuff up,” said Lijadu. “DJing has grown me as a person,” said Lijadu. She speaks about putting yourself out there, and being vulnerable yet powerful. As she has become surer of her DJing skills, she says she has, “increased confidence as an artist and as Kemi.”
T H E I M M O R TA L J E A N - M I C H E L B A S Q U I AT Written by Naz Gocek Illustrations by Nova Meurice
PROPHETIC. CHARISMATIC. ADDICT. REVOLUTIONARY. BOLD. EXPENSIVE.
Over the past few years, Jean-Michel Basquiat has become the darling of the contemporary art market. In May, his 1982 work Untitled sold for $110.5 million, setting a record for the most expensive painting sold by an American artist. In 2016, Basquiat was the top-selling American artist at auctions, amassing a jaw dropping $172 million in sales. Just his untitled painting of a devil sold for $57.3 million at Christie’s in New York. Basquiat was a pioneering artist who took New York by storm in the late 1970s and early 1980s. He was synonymous with the city’s thriving and vibrant art scene. Although he joined the infamous 27 Club due to a drug overdose in 1988, his seismic legacy has survived the test of time. His contemporary fans include Leonardo DiCaprio, Yoko Ono, Johnny Depp, and Tommy Hilfiger. Wealthy private collectors fawn over his work and they aren’t the only ones. For those of us who want in on the Basquiat fan club (minus the
million dollar price tag), there is an answer: wearable art. The fashion industry has leapt on the Basquiat bandwagon. Most recently, London-based retailer Browns teamed up with NYC streetwear brand Rome Pays Off to launch an 18-piece Jean-Michel Basquiat x Browns capsule collection. The clothes are meant to celebrate the opening of Basquiat: Boom for Real at the Barbican Centre, the first large exhibition of Basquiat in the U.K. since 1984. French label agnès b. also released a limited edition t-shirt featuring Basquiat’s Autoportrait, from the designer Agnès B’s own art collection. Browns and agnès b. are joining the ranks of many other labels that have immortalized Basquiat, including The Skateroom skateboards (2017), Medicom toys (2017), Uniqlo clothing (2017), Urban Decay makeup (2017), Alice + Olivia clothing (2016), monkey time t-shirts and caps (2016), Forever 21 clothing (2014) and Reebok sneakers (2013).
“THE QUESTION REMAINS WHY BASQUIAT?”
On its capsule collection’s website, Browns asks “Why stare at an artwork on the wall when you can actually wear it?” Indeed, there is something unique about being able to wear art, as opposed to hanging a replica of it on your wall. Clothing feels more intimate and real. If the luxury of experiencing the lively energy of Basquiat’s original artwork is not available, wearing his work presents itself as alternate way to infuse life into art. Wearing art makes it more experiential and less remote; we feel more connected. Moreover, we can style art on our own terms. There’s a sense of autonomy that comes from wearing art. Perhaps most intuitively, we enjoy sporting artwork because it’s a way of self-expression. Art adds a new layer to the message we communicate through our clothing; we share our artistic taste with the world, and leave the world to ponder why. We share, we inspire and we mystify. It is possible that the answer to why is yet another reason we choose hangers over walls. Wearing something continuously gives it a new role: it becomes a reminder. We spend so much time outside of our four walls that clothing can become a symbol of continuity in chaos. We all have that one hoodie that has essentially grown up with us. Threads can form a home base.
The son of a Haitian-American father and Puerto Rican mother, Basquiat grew up in a tumultuous middle-class household in Brooklyn. He dropped out of high school to become an artist, and consequently he became one of the most influential artists in New York. Though he is best known for his paintings, Basquiat’s art was not limited to brush on canvas. He started off as a graffiti artist, working under the name of SAMO, meaning “same old, same old bullshit,” with a friend. Young Basquiat covered New York’s walls with political and poetical graffiti. Additionally, he created murals and installations for nightclubs, designed clothing, performed in a band, and even acted in a film. Basquiat’s creations are overwhelming and complicated. Most of his paintings feature raw imagery, bold composition, and color. The neo-expressionist artist masterfully balances contradictory concepts. His paintings juxtapose control and impulse, satire and seriousness, scenes of urban and primal life; most of them are bright yet contain incredibly dark subject matter. Basquiat was intimately aware of how the human mind works; he once explained, “I cross out words so you will see them more; the fact that they are obscured makes you want to read them.”
Basquiat’s creations are political. His works fearlessly explore police brutality, racism, gentrification, poverty, fame, revolution, capitalism, exploitation and African history. Take a look at Hollywood Africans at the Whitney Museum. Painted in 1983, the acrylic and oil stick piece is deafeningly yellow. It consists mostly of primary colors, with corners fading to black. The phrases in the image—like “sugar cane,” “tobacco,” “heroism,” “gangsterism,” “What is Bwana?”—allude to African and African American history, along with the stereotypical roles available to black actors. Basquiat waves traces of his own history throughout the painting as well; the three figures in the center are Basquiat, rapper Rammellzee, and painter Toxic. Almost any clothing item featuring Basuiat’s work will include his signature crown. Featured in almost all of his paintings, the simple, three-pronged crown depicts the artist’s attitude toward power structures. The crown suggests that artists crown each other,
and pays tribute to his beginnings: graffiti artists used to express their admiration for a piece by painting a crown next to it. The crown also challenges monarchy. In his 1982 painting Charles the First, Basquiat writes “Most kings get their head cut off” on the canvas. He often places the crown on top of a T-Rex; an ironic reference that the king of the dinosaurs is extinct. Basquiat unapologetically states that change is coming. Justice is coming. Even a brief discussion of his preferred subject matter reveals why Basquiat is so proto-contemporary. His work is simultaneously contextual and timeless. His return to fame has coincided with political and social turmoil. Movements like Black Lives Matter and Idle No More have been working to achieve racial justice. LGBTQ communities are fighting for their human rights. Feminism is finally becoming more intersectional. Economic justice is on the agenda as well with debate over corporate social responsibility, bailouts,
healthcare as a right, and the minimum wage. Politics are more tumultuous than ever, with populism on the rise across the West and deadlock over refugee rights and immigration. Some monarchies were shattered by the Arab Spring, while others continue to hold onto power. The media still fails to humanely represent women and people of color. On a smaller scale, our generation’s perception of privacy and identity has undergone a transformation. Technology has redefined our conception of identity: who are we offline, and who are we online? Basquiat’s work has an appealing performative bent; he worked on the streets, and his studio was always full of people. His works are shamelessly direct. The concept of a performance and the exploration of identity is closely related to how we use social media. Basquiat’s work, especially his collages, reflect our consciouses. Our minds are perpetually saturated with advertisements, news, music, art and videos. His incorporation of politics, logos, music, African art, and his own experiences reflects how identity is not static, but instead influenced by a myriad of factors. As Eleanor Nairne, the curator of Basquiat: Boom for Real, explains, “One of the reason that he’s had such an incredibly lasting influence is because it’s actually a very post modern thing to be able to understand identity as a very fertile ground for experiment.” The unprecedented popularity and accessibility of celebrity culture is another reason Basquiat’s work is once again relevant. His close friends represented a cross section of art and pop culture; he was close with Andy Warhol, David Bowie and Madonna. In his works Boone and Mona Lisa, Basquiat recreates Da Vinci’s classic painting in an almost violating way. Basquiat’s Mona Lisa appears vandalized, carelessly and aggressively drawn. He blurs the lines between art and vandalism, between high art and street art. He poses the questions: Who is a true artist? Who deserves praise and recognition? Basquiat’s search for a voice and an identity, especially at a time when few black artists were on the scene, resonates with many of us. His confidence is inspiring; according to his friends and family, the visionary always knew that he could be famous. In a New York Times interview, he explained, “Since I was 17, I thought I might be a star.” A month before his death, he declared, “I’m not a real person. I’m a legend.” Painting in Armani suits, going out every night with pop culture icons, and modeling for Comme des Garcons: Basquiat had no intention of being conventional. His bold attitude remains electrifying. Basquiat gives many young artists, especially those who are part of marginalized groups, the license to believe that they can be game changers.
“PERHAPS WE WEAR BASQUIAT BECAUSE, LIKE HIM, WE REFUSE TO SURRENDER TO THE UNINTERRUPTED, UNCHANGING FLOW OF DAILY LIFE.” The interaction of art and fashion is fascinating, albeit not harmless. Especially when it comes to Basquiat’s work, the commercialization of his artwork through garments heightens the risk of essentialism. Most people are acquainted with his paintings made between 1981 and 1982; the neo-expressionist ones that sell for the highest price at auctions. Basquiat-inspired fashion features a shockingly small sliver of his work. This restricted represetnation prevents a comprehensive understanding of his process and his work, which included graffiti, baseball helmets, clothes, collages, xeroxes, and even music. It is in the hands of designers to avoid oversimplifying Basquiat’s identity. Stacey Bendet, the founder of the fashion label Alice + Olivia, worked to reflect a more holistic image of the artist in the brand’s Basquiat collection. In an interview with InStyle, she explains, “Every piece is really about a part of his life, and a part of his art process.” For instance, the collection’s glow in the dark clutch inspired by Basquiat’s cover art for the single Beat Bop is a nod to New York’s notorious nightlife. Another issue that can arise in the marriage of fashion and art is misrepresentation. The products may misrepresent the widely acknowledged intent, or meaning of the art. When Ruby Rose, a white woman, was selected as the face of Urban Decay’s Basquiat themed 12-piece makeup collection, controversy
erupted. Thousands took to social media to question whether a white woman was the most appropriate spokesperson for makeup inspired by an artist who continuously criticized the lack of black representation in the media. The commercialization of art through fashion is a debate in and of itself; but in Basquiat’s case, there’s consensus that he would have loved to see his work on clothing. In the words of Paige Powell, his lover and first gallerist as reported by the Financial Times: “He would’ve been ecstatic to see his work worn by street kids and society personalities.” Furthermore, “When things are executed well with art on garments, it can be magical,” said Powell. Basquiat’s work is undoubtedly relevant and mesmerizing. His story, manipulation of color and line, astute observations, political statements, and unashamed experimentation are timeless. His use of the crown motif is fitting; the king of his own world, Basquiat’s art is lawless, fearless and timeless. Our generation is reviving his spirit of freedom, independence and exploration. Perhaps we wear Basquiat because, like him, we refuse to surrender to the uninterrupted, unchanging flow of daily life. We wish to outlive the cloud of dull indifference that defines the lives of many. Maybe the crown tattoo on my wrist is my attempt to internalize and externalize Basquiat’s undying belief in the power of human creativity.
Written by By Fiona Kim Henderson Photos courtesy of AngĂŠlica Dass, Humanae
WE’RE ALL ONE COLORFUL FAMILY
An interview with photographer
Angélica Dass about her project Humanae
hat if instead of being defined by a color associated with your ethnic background, you were recognized for having your own unique skin color? Brazilian photographer Angélica Dass is trying to accomplish exactly that with her ongoing project Humanae. By using photography as a vehicle to celebrate that we all have our own unique colors, she is leading in the direction of positive social change. The change that needs to happen, according to Dass, is huge. “It is as big as when we believed…that the world was flat… and suddenly we realize we are teaching wrong…that we are a globe, and now nobody can come back and say that the earth is flat…We have genetics fighting to prove and to explain that we are just one race, that’s the human race…(but) we continue teaching kids that it’s black and white. So I really want something as big as saying that the world is not flat.” For Humanae, Dass hosts open call photo shoots in cities around the world. She takes individual portraits of people who come to the shoots and matches each person’s skin tone to a corresponding shade of Pantone paint, which she then uses to make the background of each photo. Although Dass has no association with Pantone as a brand, she uses it as a code because, she remarks, “in this color scale, I’m completely sure what means black and white. And I’m sure that in all my portraits, I don’t have any black or white.” On the internet, in exhibitions, and in public spaces around the world, these portraits, approaching a total of 4,000, are lined up side by side. Although the project started with portraits of only her family and friends, now anyone can volunteer to be photographed. Humanae features people of numerous ethnicities, gender identities, physical abilities, and socioeconomic statuses. “The most important information behind this work is exactly what you can see. Because you can see the nationality of nobody, you can’t see
who’s the migrant or not, you can’t see who is the poor or who is the rich,” Angélica commented. Her work is meant to spark discussions of discrimination and show how problematic it is to categorize people based on their supposed skin colors. It strives to prove that there truly is no black and white. When asked if she has ever photographed two people of the exact same skin tone, she excitedly grabbed a block with four photos on it and inched as close as possible to
her computer screen to show me the portraits over Skype. She pointed out two people – a blonde boy with blue eyes and a young woman with a curly afro – who matched precisely the same shade of Pantone paint. “I can assure you that she, in (the) United States, would be African-American and the treatment will be different of her. But the skin tone (is) exactly the same,” Dass exclaimed. As a person of mixed heritage, the artist does not want to have to choose just one color to represent her. She wonders, “what is the level that could classify me as black or white? What really means being black or white? (Does) my curly hair that defines me? It’s the tone of my skin?” Despite some negative responses to the project, ranging from people accusing Dass of wanting to destroy the white race to condemning her for utilizing a paint brand created by white people, Humanae has been positively impactful on countless individuals. Many elementary school teachers now use it as a tool so their students do not think about skin color in terms of black and white. Many adults, who have been moved by the work, have written testimonies on Dass’s website. One woman, Miryam, shares that she was “raised in a family that held KKK beliefs and…forced (her) to abuse other children based on their skin colour and or ethnicity…Humanae is touching a deep chord in (her) and freeing
(her) soul to be closer to who (she) was meant to be.” There is no denying that projects like Humanae are facilitating a movement to accept and embrace the infinitely many skin colors present in our world. However, it is important to recognize that this social change is far from complete and requires full participation from everyone: not just those in influential positions in major industries, but also from average people going about their everyday lives. In the words of Dass herself, “It’s important that the everyday citizen is an active activist… Sometimes the global change started in a local change.”
For more information on Humanae, check out: www.humanae.tumblr.com www.angelicadass.com
THE GOLD S TA N DA R D Written by Esther Omole Photographed by Jessica Yeung Modeled by Alexa Davy, Krithi Reddy, Tricia Monte, Naya Yassin
f the definition of beauty is constantly evolving, society seems to have invented an immovable constant—an inherently unequal standard of beauty. Like any good business, the beauty industry reflects the interest of the buyer. It consistently asks us to determine what constitutes the standards of modern beauty. With social media, we are closer now than ever to the companies that wish to connect with us. This access has transformed the industry and given the word “trend” even greater importance. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that the September 2017 release of Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty, with its wide range of 40 foundation shades, has already incited a growing appearance of darker faces in mainstream media. Across multiple cultures, the darkness of one’s skin tone equates to the femininity, beauty, and ultimately self-worth of a woman. In West Africa, for example, women are grouped by the melanin in their skin, and darker girls are constantly reminded that beauty is reserved for those of fairer shades. These traditional, Eurocentric beauty standards—initially set in the Western world—have impacted non-Western ethnic groups. “I’m Indian and a lot of Indian people do have brown skin...but in the Indian media, a lot of the models that are represented are very, very light skinned. And that is the beauty standard there—light skin,” said Shreya Venkat ‘21 Having been dismissed by an industry typically dominated by Western and Eurocentric beauty standards, it is not difficult to see why women of darker complexions are rarely acknowledged as a viable target consumer, and therefore, have never truly found beauty products accustomed to their complexions. The release of Fenty Beauty introduced itself as an answer to this immovable presence of a limited vision for beauty. Promising to be “a new generation of beauty” created for “all skin colors, all undertones, from all countries,” the line made its debut with dozens of shades. Rihanna herself spoke in response to testimonies about the line’s shade inclusivity. “We have this amazing emotional connection with customers who’ve never been able to find their shade of foundation before—women crying at the (makeup) counter...the first woman I saw put makeup on her face was a black woman—my mom—and when I think of my customers, I want everyone to feel like they can find their color, that they are represented as part of this new genera-
tion,” said Rihanna at Vogue’s Forces of Fashion conference. The response from other makeup brands has been almost immediate. Beauty campaigns, such as L’Oreal’s Holographic Look Glow Kit, Estée Lauder’s Double Wear Foundation, and Kylie Cosmetics’ Brown Sugar Matte, have begun to feature models of darker skin tones and “unconventional” standards of beauty and femininity. In addition, award-winning black actress, writer, and creator Issa Rae was recently made one of the faces of Covergirl cosmetics, and model Ajak Deng hailing from South Sudan was introduced as the face of Cover Fx’s “Nude is Not Beige” campaign. These initiatives sound like a step in the right direction but raise concern in regards to the motives of this progression towards inclusion. If makeup companies have taken an interest in incorporating more diversity into their lines, have they committed to conquering society’s gold standard of beauty? The social climate of our generation calls for body positivity, inclusivity, and an active role in inventing our own norms—especially in the realms of
beauty and fashion. I spoke with some of Stanford’s women of color and asked them to express their experiences with the adaptive nature of the beauty industry. “It’s like a mixed bag,” said Adesuwa Agbonile ‘21. “It’s good because we have more representation, but we have to be mindful of how we’re representing black bodies. Are these actually the voices of black (and) brown people, or of white people trying to make a profit?” The recent promotion of dark skinned models and spokespeople is an unnervingly delayed recognition that the dark skinned consumer is very much active in the beauty industry and readily purchases makeup—just as their fellow, lighter skinned consumer might. Have these quick responses exposed an inability to promote inclusivity unless the market introduces the pressure to do so? “I wouldn’t say that the industry is changing,” said Aria Small ‘21. “I still think there is one desirable look...there are sections of the beauty industry that are evolving...but this isn’t anything that should be unique to one beauty line.”
Regardless of the the uncertain motive behind the wider range of complexions now present in campaigns, women of darker shades have a newfound ease of access to products. Yet, Fenty Beauty, along with many other prominent makeup companies, still have leaps to make in satisfying their expectant public. For instance, Agbonile hopes the price of Fenty Beauty decreases and the brand adds darker options for the contour pieces of the collection. Having seen these developments occur in the span of a month, consumers hold the responsibility to recognize the intent behind these lines that seek to placate the darker skinned consumer as a means of staying on trend. Companies have learned to evolve based not only on our desires for products, but also on our concern for enacting social chage. If we wish to witness a true evolution and diversification of the beauty industry in general, we as consumers must work to eradicate an excluding standard of beauty.
PHOTOGRAPHED MODELED GALINDO,
JOE AND NAZ
THE NEW BREAKFAST
I wanted to explore storytelling through my photographs, and felt that the models themselves could tell their charactersâ€™ stories effectively if shot well...
...Photography isn’t just about getting the “perfect” angle or the correct ratios, it’s about giving the viewer something that they can think about — a story told through...
...a combination of lighting, poses, styling, and camera work. The New Breakfast Club sticks to the script just enough to orient the viewer, but...
...fills each character role with your classmate, best friend, or neighbor. I purposefully did not aim to create dynamic characters in my photographs, but rather...
...typecast ones â€” encouraging the viewer to reconsider who they stereotype, why, and what qualities of that person they consider when doing so.
Written by Siena Fay Photographed by Jessica Yeung Modeled by Siena Fay and Blue Fay 58
Y FE M MEA ME MA NE LE M VE OD RY E LS TH ING
’ll admit, I’m biased.
My brother recently became a model. But honestly, I’ve never seen anyone wear stilettos better. Whether he is in a floor length velvet gown with an Angelina Jolie-esque slit or a pencil skirt, it is undeniable that the boy can walk. And his casting is not out of the ordinary.
“Sometimes I worry when my brother goes to the bank or Target with his pointed blue acrylic nails and red lipstick.
But mostly, I am proud.”
esigners such as Marc Jacobs and Stefano Pilati have sent male models in feminine couture down runways. Gucci, Vetements, and Palomo Spain showed their collections on mixed-sex models, challenging the dichotomy of menswear versus womenswear. Louis Vuitton cast Jaden Smith for its spring-summer 2016 womenswear ad campaign, a collection described by Vogue as cyberpunk bohemian chic. The fashion world is softening the sharp edges of traditional masculinity, enabling people to express who they really are and how they want to look. “I consider myself gender-flu-
id, and (modeling) is interestingly enough one of the few spaces where I really get to explore that part of my identity in a celebrated way,” said Blue Fay. Traditional masculinity has been, en masse, a rigid and unforgiving social construct. Any divergence from the strict gender role it prescribed was viewed as a social betrayal, one that was subject to ridicule and ostracism. The vestiges of this alienating ideology are still ever present, and sometimes violent. “I certainly get looks when I go out and that’s never fun,” said Fay. “And people have said shit. I have to think: do I want to go out wearing a very femme outfit and deal with the
repercussions?” Sometimes I worry when my brother goes to the bank or Target with his pointed blue acrylic nails and red lipstick. But mostly, I am proud. He is more courageous on a daily basis than most people are ever challenged to be. This is especially important in light of the recent political cycle, which feels more like a regressive gender time warp than a conscious reality. President Donald Trump embraces toxic masculinity and refuses to accept non-cisgender people. In this tumultuous time, full of suffocating gender roles and renewed conservative constraints, fashion strikes back, with style.
“In five years when a kid goes to school wearing a skirt, he won’t get beat up and kids won’t get mad at him. It just doesn’t matter,” said Jaden Smith in an interview with Nylon in July 2016. “I’m taking the brunt of it so that later on, my kids and the next generations of kids will all think that certain things are normal that weren’t expected before my time.” tar of Chanel’s Gabrielle Bag campaign Pharrell Williams stated, “Although there’s mostly the perception that it’s for women, I just started to see, OK, as a man I can wear some of this,” in an interview after Chanel’s readyto-wear fall show in Paris. Models such as Ruby Rose and Casey Legler, the first woman to
sign exclusively as a male model according to The Guardian, have also subverted traditional masculinity by broadening what it means to be masculine. Designer Alejandro Gomez Palomo has worked to break barriers separating menswear and womenswear. In an interview with Vogue, Palomo said, “I feel that boys need to discover different ways to wear clothes that we haven’t been able to wear up until now.” While the fashion industry is taking definitive steps towards including femme male models and gender-fluidity on the runway, it is far from perfect. “I think that at this point, putting a male—or what is considered a male body but that has the aspects
of traditional feminine beauty—in the clothes that are usually reserved for people who meet the necessary criterion of feminine beauty… needs to be pushed further,” said Fay. “It is important—and as somebody who does that, it is important to me—but I would also like to see people who have bodies that don’t necessarily fit either one of those two molds being put in Louis Vuitton and Paris Fashion Week.” Fashion still has a long way to go before all genders and identities are represented, but the space being carved out is promising. Perhaps we will witness fashion change the social construct of masculinity. Perhaps we already are, one skirt at a time.
G R O W I N G V I S I B I L I T Y
H I J A B T A K E O V E R
Written by Eilaf Osman and Yasmin Eltawil Photographed by Bao Phan Modeled by Faatimah Solomon
hat do Nike, H&M, and Fenty Beauty have in common? They’ve tapped into a phenomenon in the fashion world today: the hijab takeover. In case you haven’t been keeping up, 2017 has seen hijabi superstar model, Halima Aden, featured as part of Rihanna’s squad in her Fenty Beauty launch commercial and hijabi Mariah Idrissi star in an international H&M campaign. Weren’t we just protesting against France passing laws banning the hijab in public places such as beaches and schools? When did the hijab become so accepted that it’s being seen all over Western advertising campaigns now? The answer is the growing visibility of hijab-wearing fashionistas and powerful women in social media. Social media platforms have created a space for hijabi women to showcase their talent and express themselves while also connecting with other Muslim women around the world. For the longest time, women who wear the hijab have been seen at odds with society or invisible. Now with social media and mainstream advertising campaigns featuring hijabis, hijabis are being normalized. “If you cannot see yourself in the media, it’s hard to gain a sense of representation, especially for girls who are just wearing the hijab (for the first time),” said Nour Coudsi, a University of California, Berkeley student pursuing a bachelor’s degree in media. “When I first did (wore the hijab), everyone I would look at in the media looked nothing like me. Everyone was blonde, blue-eyed, and in a bikini, even in Syria, where I grew up.” Social media is also giving the Muslim community the opportunity to engage in dialogue on the topic, what is hijab, really? Technically, hijab is just the Islamic cultural choice to express modesty and privacy through clothing. With just one scroll through #hijab on Instagram, you’ll see a variety of different looks that constitute hijab.
“The variations of this do not really matter, as long as you feel comfortable. I sometimes wear a beanie. I sometimes wear a headscarf. It just depends on the style I like that day. I try so hard to break all the standards and stereotypes of what a hijabi should look like,” Leenah Al-Falih, Stanford sophomore, said. Millennials are also expressing hijab in a completely different way than their mothers or grandmothers. Hijab is becoming a part of fashion expression, not just a veil of modesty. “When I first wore the hijab, I was here in the bay area. I honestly had no inspiration other than my mother,” said Al-Falih. “Now, I’m thankful for the hijabi bloggers. I immediately think about my cousin, who just started wearing the hijab, and I can’t help but feel happy for her because when she opens her Instagram, she gets to see people that look and dress like her, which is a big deal for Muslim women.” Brands are also tapping into the purchasing power of hijabi women all around the world. “Social media (channels) spreading hijabi makeup artists and clothing lines (have) helped me find more hijab friendly clothes. Have you ever heard of Riva? It’s a Bahraini clothing brand that has recently started becoming hijabi-friendly after Ascia (AKF, a blogger) introduced hijabi fashion to the brand,” said Mashael Alqadeeb, a Stanford second year master’s student in geophysics. With their presence on social media, hijabis are no longer “hidden Muslim women behind a veil,” explained Al-Falih. “To have hijabi women rise up and prove their standing in the media is very inspiring… There are no limits to what you can do as a hijabi.” Hijabis are visible now and aren’t going anywhere. They are Ibtihaj Muhammad, a U.S. Olympian fencer who also wears the hijab. They are Noor Tagouri, a critically acclaimed journalist who also wears the hijab. They are many Stanford women studying various degrees who also wear the hijab.
a 35mm series by Iman Floyd-Carroll 67
“Oh! You go to Stamford — in Connecticut right?”
“No, Stanford - in California with the palm trees...” 68
“I’m only here to network.”
why haven’t you called?”
“Sorry, I’ve been really
“I’m living so fast, sometimes I just feel like im dying.” 73
â€œThe people here make you feel terrible...
...until you realize that they make you feel greatâ€?
“and suddenly, I’m filled with fear again.”
F A L L 76
S T R E E T
S T Y L E
Photographed by Ryan Wimsatt Modeled by Hamzeh Daoud, Uche Amakiri, and Chinenye Ogbonnah
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