R&B/jazz artist and activist Erykah Badu is the new face of Givenchy for the Spring 2014 campaign. The singer, who came on the scene back in the ’90s and is known both for her soulful voice and flawless sense of fashion, will be heading the brand’s first campaign that features only women of color.

Givenchy reacts to the fashion industry’s tendency to use predominantly white models to represent their brands and walk their shows, an issue that ELLE‘s January 2014 cover model Joan Smalls has spoken out against extensively. Givenchy’s creative director, Riccardo Tisci, said that Badu’s casting is perfect for the line since she directly served as an inspiration for the collection. He called her an icon and told Style.com that Badu is “one of the most stylish women I’ve met in my life.” Badu is joined by model Maria Borges, newcomer Riley, and Asia Chow.

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Tisci has been advocating for more diversity on the runway, which, in his opinion, is an issue that has gotten way out of control. Recently, the fashion industry has been under fire for featuring mainly Caucasian women in ads, and Tisci is sounding off in his own way.

“At the end of the day, why are not so many black girls or Latin girls in shows? When you have an American president who is black,” he says. “When I see this happening, it’s quite sad, I think. People can be so avant-garde, so advanced, but actually not, because people are still making differences between skin color.”

Tisci hopes that this catches on, and that the fashion industry finally starts being more open-minded about showing all different kinds of women on the runway and in campaigns.

What do you think about Erykah Badu being the face of Givenchy’s 2014 Spring campaign?

Photo via dailymail.co.uk

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