Since her breakout as one of the most high-profile Black models in the 1970s, fashion world titan Bethann Hardison has advocated tirelessly for diversity in the industry, both on and off the runway. In Invisible Beauty, co-directed by Hardison herself, French documentarian Frédéric Tcheng offers a riveting look at the pioneer’s life and legacy, tracing her audacious efforts to challenge the status quo. What gradually emerges is a vibrant portrait of an icon’s ambitious attempts to revolutionize the fashion world—and indeed, our very image of beauty. Mixing fascinating archival footage and interviews with fashion icons from multiple eras (Naomi Campbell, Iman, Zendaya), this inspiring documentary adroitly balances both retrospective and contemporary perspectives on representation, showing how we got to where we are, and how far we still have to go. Constructed with an elegance and verve to match Hardison’s rebellious and radical spirit, the film is an essential reminder that diversity is not just a slogan, but the result of life-long struggle.
Series Media Partner
David Chan, Robina Riccitiello, Chris Stolte, Heidi Stolte
Bethann Hardison, Frédéric Tcheng, Chris McNabb
Mia Cioffi Henry, Frédéric Tcheng
Chris McNabb, Frédéric Tcheng
Marc Anthony Thompson
Advocate, model, and muse—with a career spanning over five decades, Bethann Hardison has gone from working in New York City’s Garment District to founding her namesake agency where she guided the careers of some of the most prominent models in the world. In 1988, she founded the Black Girls Coalition, and in 2013, she spearheaded the launch of the Diversity Coalition sparking an industry-wide movement for diversity and inclusion. Bethann currently serves on the CFDA’s Board of Directors and as Gucci’s Executive Advisor for Global Equity and Cultural Engagement.
Frédéric Tcheng is a French-born filmmaker based in Brooklyn, New York. He co_produced and co-edited Valentino: The Last Emperor. He is the co-director of the acclaimed documentary Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel, which the New York Times called “dizzily enjoyable.” His award-winning directorial debut Dior and I premiered at the 2014 Tribeca Film Festival. His film Halston was executive produced by CNN Films and premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival. He has served as a filmmaking mentor for Queer Art, a non-profit arts organization in New York. He studied engineering in France and is a graduate of the film program at Columbia University’s School of the Arts.
Filmography: Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel (2011); Dior and I (2014); Halston (2019)
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