By Candice Krieger
February 9, 2009
Hats off to Israeli fashion photographer Adi Barkan. Barkan has spent the past seven years campaigning to ban underweight models from the catwalk.
He has now launched the next phase in his campaign, reports Israel21C. Barkan has set up Simply U, a countrywide talent-scouting project to find “the most promising healthy, well-balanced and normal-sized” would-be models in Israel.
Simply U will hold seven auditions around Israel and select 20 girls. For six weeks, they will be given training in grooming and modeling, as well as workshops in nutrition, sports and self-esteem. The premise? To turn them not just into fashion models, but into role models as well. The audition process will be shown on Israel’s Channel 2.
In 2004, Barkan successfully submitted a bill to the Knesset that requires all Israeli modeling agencies to use Body Mass Index (BMI) as a pre-requisite for employment. The governments of Spain and France have since adopted the legislation.
“Let's get over being cynical. Let's recognize the problem for what it is. Let's create an alternative. Let's show them the way,” says Barkan.
With London Fashion Week just around the corner, let’s hope Britain is taking note.