Gucci’s prefall 2017 campaign celebrates both incredible fashion and diversity, as it exclusively features models of color.
Titled “Soul Scene,” the campaign draws inspiration from several 1960s influences, according to a press release, including photographer Malick Sidibé, known for capturing black-and-white images of the party culture in his native Bamako, Mali. The ads were also influenced by England’s underground Northern Soul movement to the sixties.
Shot by Glen Luchford in a dance hall (the Mildmay Club in London), the images showcase models dancing, carrying the labels’ signature bold accessories, and enjoying what looks to be a party we’d all be lucky to attend. The fact that Gucci creative director Alessandro Michele cast only black dancers and models—including Nicole Atieno, Elibeidy, Bakay Diaby, and Keiron Berton Caynes—in the campaign feels like a welcome leap forward for an industry not explicitly known for its commitment to diversity.
The project was first teased in January when the company released a series of Instagram videos featuring black models revealing their “spirit animals.” At the time, a Gucci spokesperson confirmed to Glamour the casting was for the brand’s prefall campaign.
That same month casting director James Scully praised the move. “It has the potential to be an amazing game changer,” he told Business of Fashion. “This could reset the damage done and start the business back on the road of inclusiveness.”
Gucci’s “Soul Scene” prefall 2017 campaign will begin running in mid-April, and we can only hope the fashion industry takes notes.