October 14, 2009
Posted: 1339 GMT


Less than a week after a skit on an Australian TV show featuring White men with painted Black faces created a stir and accusations of racism, French Vogue has published a photo shoot with a White model painted Black.

What do you think? Vote in the poll below.

Filed under: I-Desk Poll

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Dirk   October 14th, 2009 2:25 pm ET

If they would do it the other way around it would be fair, but if it's just to make "white" girls "black" and not use "black" models instead then it's offensive.

S   October 14th, 2009 2:27 pm ET

It seems that white is the new black! I don't find it offensive nor do I think is high fashion, it's just a good way to attract publicity.

Getrealcnn   October 14th, 2009 2:51 pm ET

I wonder why the makers of this poll FAILED to put something along the lines of "It is not offensive" as a vote option...

I would like to suggest whoever made this poll to consider putting options for all (obvious) possible arguments for this racial question. Otherwise this poll, with its results, will fail to convey a proper and more accurate public opinion. And objectivity is something CNN holds in the highests of steems – I'm confident.

Nonetheless, I voted "I have no opinion, good or bad" and here I want to explain that what I meant is "No, this is not offensive".

By painting their faces or bodies black, why would anyone with a grain of logic insinuate that because people are painting themselves to look black that they are automatically being disrespectful? Had any of this people (painted and non painted) mocked black people in a negative way then yes it is offensive, obviously. But if it's just painting to look black, why not then think that maybe they are doing so out of good reasons – perhaps out admiration/inspiration of black culture?

thomas kavanagh   October 14th, 2009 2:55 pm ET

I hate what they have done. On my face-book and Twitter pages

I have put on a message for people to boycott VOGUE for what they have done. This is wrong in everyway.

If that is what magazines are doing these days then it sucks and i hope people boycott VOGUE and do not buy their magazines

Pierre   October 14th, 2009 2:57 pm ET

I do not believe this photo is offensive, however, I truly believe that the more you give it coverage, the more it will draw attention...and this is exactly one of the things that the fashion world craves! So, well done!

John Russell   October 14th, 2009 3:02 pm ET

I am really tired of seeing black people getting offended over items like the vogue fashion model. We panda to the minorities too much. As far as CNN is concerned, please be proper jounalist and stay biased, I dont wish to hear about your personal views. As for the New York public response, People in general are too scared to say their true views, I dont see any problem hear,

Andy Becker   October 14th, 2009 3:02 pm ET

I am a white NZ man living in Japan, and to be honest the majority of white people from around the world I have met here are over racism, what is more prevalent these days is reverse racism or non white people overreacting to what they perceive as racism.
Look at the movie White Chicks, where two African American actors put on white makeup to look like white girls, would African Americans be offended if this was reversed? Does a non white person get hauled up for racism for using a derogatory white term? At the same time I had an African American take offense at an All Black rugby jersey I was wearing!
Come on America a toilet can be put in a room and called art, but a white women wearing black makeup in a fashion magazine isn't?
At the end of the day Vogue wins with an International marketing campaign care of CNN and other media.

Paul   October 14th, 2009 3:05 pm ET

Why couldnt, the employees of Vogue use black models for that role? it shows Racisim still exists, who cant take a White model paint her black, to represent a black model, and looking at the model, she has no BLACK features at all, so shame on Vogue if they are not BRAVE enough to get a real SISTER, for the role.

lala   October 14th, 2009 3:11 pm ET

OK, what the hell, I just saw this on tv, and I thinks it's ridiculous that people are even shocked by this. I really don't at all understand that there is so much controversy about these photos, Vogue is just trying to show that Lara Stone is a really good model and can convincingly pretend to be someone of another race. I didn't even pay a lot of attention to these pictures when flipped through Vogue Paris, because I had seen this before on ANTM, about 2 years was for some milk campaign-thing, with the milk mustache..

rick lopez   October 14th, 2009 3:13 pm ET

for gods sake! could the human race get more pathetic than it already is already. stop whyning all the time its just a picture what about the film the wynan brother s made where they painted themselves as white girls and made fun of whites, i didnt cry about it,i'm mixed race.really pathetic!

Cara   October 14th, 2009 3:17 pm ET

I don´t really see why this is such a controversial photoshoot. If they had been meant as a mockery, okay. But I don´t think anyone her is trying to discriminate black people. It´s art, it´s what fashion magazines do. They do things like these to make a special picture. Like there are also fashion pictures with models in native-american clothes, who weren´t native american at all. I think they just wanted to give this shoot as special edge, but didn´t intent to hurt anyone´s feelings.

Jacob Jorgensen   October 14th, 2009 3:19 pm ET

Black or white.
Color is not hiding a human.
Policy is.

William   October 14th, 2009 3:20 pm ET

If white people want to look black, or black people want to look white, or anything in between, so what? Is that inherently "racist"?

Andy Becker   October 14th, 2009 3:26 pm ET

And what makes this more ridiculous is the fact that the story was presented by two non white presenters, from a country with an African American president, the KKK is racist, yes, but an International fashion magazine and the new international norm is not, get over it!

rick lopez   October 14th, 2009 3:42 pm ET

people are either good or bad! whatever colour or religion they are, thats how people should be judged. cnn the doom n gloom channel.

rick lopez   October 14th, 2009 4:05 pm ET

has anyone spent christmas in holland or spain where they have black peter or the 3kings deliver presents to the kids and baby jesus? in peru where iam now we celebrate verano negro(black summer) creole music,food,dancing all week, they even sell black dolls and masks. in england my home black dolls are banned.locos!

HSTRIALSAM   October 14th, 2009 4:59 pm ET

i think is offensive it doesn't anyway represent fair fashion because there are more black model that could have play her role if she fill so as she shows and here in the Netherlands it,s the same story been how you not. recism is still wide sprayed here.

kathleen larwin   October 14th, 2009 5:32 pm ET

I think these photos especially the one on the left is offensive not because of the black model but because of how she was posed. I think it is deceiving to post on CNN that so many were offended by these photos because of the black skin. I think they were offended because of how the model was posed...either black or white it would be offensive. This has nothing to do with skin color!

James Pederson   October 14th, 2009 5:38 pm ET

Global society in general accepts "whiteface" as the standard for beauty which is the reason skin lightening products are so popular all over the world. It is a welcomed change to see 'blackface" depicted as beautiful instead of the usual bafoonish caricature. I commend Vogue for taking such a bold unconventional fashion step and hope that others in the industry will emulate this statement that black is beautiful.

Jim Larry   October 14th, 2009 5:41 pm ET

Arts and fashion is ones opinion or view,and if someone can come up painting black bad and make white cool,and we never see that as "racist"?. Am sure you know the truth you only hiding it. This is not the issue of today; The same RACIST said JESUS is WHITE,DEVIL is BLACK, ANGELS white,imagine that. Black cloth is to morn departed soul. Anyway whatever white folks trying to prove,we all belong to this planet.

David Oduro   October 14th, 2009 6:42 pm ET

personally i don't think this is offensive as people think because this is what the fashion world like. they don't care if it's offensive or not, all they want is creativity.

Thot   October 14th, 2009 10:16 pm ET

To have a fair answer to these photos, you shouldn’t put controversy in the sentence; it generates immediately an alertness that wasn’t there when you are simply looking to a photo. If you posted the photo asking what people thought about it, not mentioning sources and controversies, and people would probably look at it in a different way.
I’ve seen black actors playing as white faced people, and people don’t question racism on it.
What if was a black white faced model on the cover?
People need to stop screaming racism every time the most minimal thing happens.
I don’t know Vogue response, but I know that the magazine had many other controversial photos before on their cover magazines. For me it’s all just gimmick. I see big money earnings for the October Vogue magazine.

dant   October 15th, 2009 1:26 am ET

My opinion,as we all have one is this:moddeling is a form of art,so painting the models face black,red green or yellow is an enhanement of the work in progess....I am a blck women and no offense taken.In fact its quite creative.....and yes I could pick yhe photo apart and perhaps found something underlying derogatory...but why bother...look at the beauty of it for what it is.

Fawad   October 15th, 2009 4:22 am ET

For freedom of expression/speech, they can paint anything.
That says it all:Muslims are not crazy, when they are being painted followed by their overwhelming anger. It's common reaction to something downright offensive.

Biruzz   October 15th, 2009 4:31 am ET

I don't think its offensive or racist at all.

Does anybody not know that the chick was white, or did vogue hid the fact that it was a white chick dolled up to be black. I dont know if the clothes the models were wearing were trendy because they look like recycled items. Then again I have no sense of fashion.

I remember just a short few months ago that people were balling their eyes out on TV upon hearing the news of the death of a so called pop icon or legend (i am not stating his name). This black man was obsessed with being white. he had all sorts of surgeries and god knows what else to appear as a caucasian. Was that not offensive? People were actually praising him.

Vogue the clothes suck, but don't be bullied intimidated.

James Pederson   October 15th, 2009 5:45 am ET

Global society in general accepts "whiteface" as the standard for beauty which is the reason skin lightenining products are so popular all over the world. It is a welcomed change to see "blackface" depicted as beautiful instead of the usual bafoonish caricature. I commend vogue for taking such a bold unconventional fashion step and hope that others in the industry will emulate this staement that black is beautiful (on Whites as well as Blacks).

The King Of The World   October 15th, 2009 9:00 am ET

You can not control creative people. Creative people are like wild nature.

World of fashion is always important.

It is high fashion.

But who is the standard of fashion?

Where does the trend of fashion?

I am a bit shocked.

I guess that my life is the high fashion, but why? Because I am The King Of The World, so my life is the like fashion magazine cover.

God !!!

Adamu I. Baffa   October 15th, 2009 4:07 pm ET

It show that,anything someone did in the world by mean of fashion so and so forth, it will be possible to get one who will try to make it better more than the first one.That's why I think it's fashion.

Alex   October 30th, 2009 8:53 pm ET

Ina country that claims it is "the country of the rights of man". France is a profoundly rascist country in deep hypocritical denial.
This magazine is distributed in the US, but should, at all costs, be boycotted.
The casual justification of these supposed "beauty shots" is reminiscent of the stereotypical WWII cartoons.
I have to ask why black models weren't used, or better yet, made up as white people.
Since when has race become a costume? How about doing a spread with Asian slant eyed makeup??

Shawn   December 19th, 2009 1:04 am ET

I find it ridicules that only in AMERICA a shoot with fashion model Lara Stone would be suggestive as BLACKFACE. If PEOPLE took a step back and looked up what BLACKFACE was about PEOPLE would see that it was an interpretation of African Americans in the early 1900’s, with done up black paint, white painted on lips, finished off with an afro on Caucasian people. As you can tell from the shoot with Lara, the only referent that has slight validity to racism could be suggestive of the darkening of the skin with no reference to any kind of race, only that her skin was darkened. Furth more, by putting a reference to Lara Stone’s French Vogue shoot as BLACKFACE further perpetuates racism, by marginalization and subjugated codes.

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