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Invisible Beauty (2023)

Opens on September 29

Director: Bethann Hardison, Frédéric Tcheng Run Time: 115 min. Release Year: 2023

Starring: Bethann Hardison

Country: United States
Language: English

About the film:

World Premiere, 2023 Sundance Film Festival

Fashion revolutionary Bethann Hardison looks back on her journey as a pioneering Black model, modeling agent, and activist, shining a light on an untold chapter in the fight for racial diversity.

From walking runway shows alongside Iman to discovering supermodels like Tyson Beckford and mentoring icons like Naomi Campbell, Hardison has been at the epicenter of major representational shifts in fashion. Catalyzing change requires continuous championing, and as the next generation takes the reins, Hardison reflects on her personal journey and the cost of being a pioneer.

In a world where the work of Black women is too easily buried… an illuminating and sturdy paean to an influential industry leader”

—Lovia Gyarkye, The Hollywood Reporter

In Invisible Beauty (2023), Hardison and her co-director, fashion filmmaker Frédéric Tcheng, trace her impact from runway shows in New York and Paris in the ’70s to roundtables about lack of racial diversity in the early 2000s. Interviews with industry players speak to the state of fashion, while friends and family attest to Hardison’s rebellious and ambitious spirit. The film is an absorbing record of Hardison’s accomplishments and a rare contemplation on the life of a radical thinker.

About the filmmakers:

Bethann Hardison is an advocate, model, and muse with a career spanning over five decades. She 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. Among other work, 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. She has received numerous awards recognizing her decades of advocacy work, including the CFDA’s Founder’s Award in 2014. She 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 has presented his work in Venice, Toronto, Sundance, Telluride, CPH:Dox and Tribeca, where his award-winning directorial debut, Dior and I (2014), premiered to critical acclaim. His other documentary work includes directing Halston (2019), co-directing Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel (2011), and co-producing and co-editing Valentino: The Last Emperor (2008).

After premiering at the 2023 Sundance Film Festival, Invisible Beauty (2023) screened at additional film festivals, including Tribeca and Hot Docs, and won best documentary feature and the audience award at the Sarasota Film Festival in Florida.

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