How Transgender Models Redefine Fashion Campaigns

Bruce Weber photographs 17 trangender models for Barneys New York’ s latest ad campain, raising an interesting conversation. 

Text: Katerina Papapostolou


Seventeen unique transgender individuals, with their extraordinary experiences and intriguing personal stories are the faces of the Barneys New York’s Spring 2014 ad campaign. Wearing clothes from designers like Balenciaga, Celine, Ann Demeulemeester, Givenchy, Helmut Lang and Altuzarra these models star in the “Brothers, Sisters, Sons and Daughters” campaign which was shot by the preeminent photographer Bruce Weber, one of the world’s most influential photographers.

These “special” models were captured and filmed by Weber in New York City, surrounded by their families, buddies, pets and loved members of their support network. In that way the photographer tried to represent their very normal coexistence with the surroundings, showing the struggles a transgender person may face in order to establish his or her sexual identity.

Barneys New York is very proud to support the transgender community and hopes to help them to be easily accepted and absorbed by the world.

The fashion world has already embraced transgender people as models and campaign faces. Patricia Bosworth, an editor at Vanity Fair, interviewed each model to unveil a small part of their odd life story and how they face the the rejection, the social acceptance and finally the unconditional love. At the end, as one of the transgender models, Ryley, said “What is between my legs is not thoroughly who I am. If gender is black and white, I’m grey.”