Vogue features its first transgender model Andreja Pejic
As an internationally recognised inspiration to many women, American Vogue has announced that it will put its first transgender model in the pages of the glossy May issue.
Andreja Pejic will be featured in a four page spread, with an accompanying editorial, shot by legendary photographer Patrick Demarchelier. In the upcoming issue, entitled The New World, Vogue brings to light the issues surrounding “trans America” and gender fluidity within the fashion world, especially on the runways.
Pejic was born in Bosnia and Herzegovina. However, shortly after the 1999 NATO bombing of Serbia, Andreja and her family emigrated to Australia where she flourished academically. At the age of 16 she was scouted; her androgynous look enabled her to model for both male and female clothing.
In the Paris fashion shows of January 2011, she wore men’s and women’s clothes for Jean-Paul Gaultier and men’s products for Marc Jacobs. As her career blossomed, Andreja walked for both the masculine and feminine outfits from Michalsky at the Stylenite in 2011. In the following year she modelled bridal creations by Spanish designer Rosa Clara at Barcelona’s Bridal Week, 2013.
In 2014 Andreja underwent her sex reassignment surgery which ultimately changed her life for the better, as quoted in People magazine: “I was proud of my gender nonconforming career. But my biggest dream was to be comfortable in my own body. I have to be true to myself and the career is just going to have to fit around that.”
Gender identity issues are no strangers to the fashion world. On their 2014 winter runways, Gucci, Proenza Schouler and Chanel switched it up and sent gorgeous men to model womenswear collections. Givenchy, Giorgio Armani, Saint Laurent, Raf Simons, and Moschino also changed things around by casting women in menswear shows.
As the world moves forward and more people embrace who they are, though androgyny and cross-dressing are not the same as being trans, their prominence on the catwalk represents a beacon of acceptance for the community. Andreja Pejic’s success is a celebration of this progressiveness and hopefully an inspiration for designers and fashion companies to encourage more gender-fluid models into the fashion world.