Nicki Minaj tore into some fashion designers at New York Fashion week on Saturday (Sept. 9) and accused them of building brands off Hip-Hop culture but not including enough Black people in their shows.
The Young Money MC shared that opinion at a party thrown by designer Phillip Plein, who introduced his spring and summer line for next season.
“Thank you Phillip Plein for including our culture,” said Minaj, according to the New York Post. “Designers get really big and really rich of our culture, and then you don’t see a motherf—– that looks anything like us in the front row half the time. So let’s make some noise for Phillip Plein tonight.”
The rapper stated that opinion in front of a celebrity filled audience that included folks like Ne-Yo, 50 Cent, Fabolous and others. Plus, besides Minaj, Rae Sremmurd took the stage to perform, and so did Teyana Taylor, 21 Savage, Yo Gotti and Future.
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If you didn’t know, Plein’s show wasn’t the first time the “Anaconda” writer took on the fashion world, because earlier this year she blasted the Italian shoe designer Giuseppe Zanotti after first shouting him out in songs.
But despite the free promotion and making his brand more popular within hip-hop realms, Minaj said Giuseppe refused to collaborate with her on a shoe line, although he used her name for a sneaker launch.
“This is wonderful,” Minaj tweeted in February. “#Giuseppe Zanotti seems to think it’s okay to name his sneakers after me, but his PR says they won’t take our call. Lol.”
In 2016, the rapper spoke about another industry that she feels isn’t very inclusive, Hollywood. In an interview with Marie Claire, the 34-year-old talked about a double standard between white and black women when they choose to be sexually provocative. The way Minaj sees it, Black women get criticized for being risquè and white women get praised for it.
Another person who’s been pretty outspoken about the lack of diversity in the fashion industry is Naomi Campbell, who despite what Nicki said, feels things are “getting better.”
“I do feel that Iman and I will not shut up until it gets to the point where it’s [equally] balanced,” said Campbell in an interview earlier this year. “I mean, I just saw a little bit of couture. I did look online at the couture shows, and it was a little bit disappointing … We really hope it’s not going to go backwards. I always try to be optimistic, but if it does [go backwards], they they will hear us again.”
It’s possible that people like Campbell and Iman have inspired others around the globe to speak out against diversity in the fashion world, because in March the model Indi Irvin did the same.
During Paris fashion week, according to the Huffington Post, the U.K. resident stood outside the Balenciaga show with a sign that read “Les Modèles Noirs Importent,” which translates into “Black Models Matter.”
As it pertains to Nicki, we’ll have to see if her words have any affect on those designers who use hip-hop culture in their designs and shows. At least the ones who participate in New York Fashion Week.