Similar to her venture into cosmetics, Rihanna is making a bold, black statement in fashion.
Today marks the official launch of Rihanna’s FENTY luxury line under the LVMH conglomerate. This collaboration is a significant one, as Rihanna is the first Black woman to lead a fashion house under LVMH. Last week, in anticipation of the launch of her new clothing line, Rihanna released a campaign video showing some of the offerings that FENTY fans could look forward to. One of the hidden gems in the short campaign video was Rihanna’s inside look at the history of her home country of Barbados. Although subtle, it was a sign that Rihanna is on a mission to make Black a high-fashion norm.
Rihanna’s ode to blackness doesn’t stop with her campaign video. The singer-turned-fashion designer continues to use imagery to pay tribute to all things black.
For starters, Rihanna tapped Nigerian photographer, Ruth Ginika Ossai, to shoot the FENTY Maison campaign shoot. Ossai, who is an expert in capturing the African aesthetic in her work, shot the photos in Paris, France. Featured in the campaign was Senegalese model, Dieyna Ba.
The shoot was styled by young, Black fashion consultant and creative director, Dan Sablon of Lui Magazine.
To celebrate the unveiling of the FENTY Maison collection, Rihanna paid tribute to photographer Kwame Brathwaite. Brathwaite is known for documenting African American life and culture in Harlem. He is also the author of Kwame Brathwaite: Black Is Beautiful, which features portraits from his late 1950’s to 1960’s Black Is Beautiful campaign. Rihanna featured one of those portraits on her Instagram page.
The photo was taken at the fashion show at the Renaissance Casino and Ballroom in 1967 and perfectly positioned behind the models walking the runway is a sign that reads: BUY BLACK. The perfect message to accompany the debut of a historic high fashion brand led by a Black woman.
It’s clear that Rihanna is sending a message to the fashion world that she’s not afraid to shake up the industry by showcasing blackness every chance she can.