Quannah Chasinghorse: the Native American model is taking the fashion world by storm and has been nominated for a super prestigious industry award - read more
Quannah Chasinghorse is a breath of fresh air. Since the Native American model scored a spot within Calvin Klein's 'One Future' campaign in 2020, she has made a significant mark on the modelling world. Although she grew up as a self-declared fashion aficionado, "I was obsessed with watching runway shows on television – Dior, Chanel, Prada," she told Vogue last year, Quannah was wary about the lack of Indigenous representation. "It was really hard for me to feel like I had the potential to be a model."
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Despite her reservations, Quannah was signed by agency IMG Models and has enjoyed a great deal of success in the last few years. During the most recent fashion month she walked for a whole host of major labels – Chanel, Tommy Hilfiger and Prabal Gurung to name a few, as well as a stylish stint on the Vogue World runway. Quite the CV for a relative newcomer.
What tribe is Quannah Chasinghorse from?
Quannah Chasinghorse at the 2022 Met Gala
Quannah is of mixed Indigenous descent – Hän Gwich'in from Eagle Village, Alaska and Oglala Lakota from South Dakota. Every summer, she hunts caribou and fishes for salmon with her family, and so she feels deeply connected both to her people's land and nature as a whole.
In addition to her modelling, she is an environmental campaigner and has participated in many climate rallies, despite not viewing herself as such. Quannah works to protect the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (part of the traditional homelands of many of the Gwich'in people) from oil development.
"I don't see myself as an activist," she told Paper in 2020. "I see myself as a protector. You know, I was just protecting my way of life, practising my ways of life and sharing my story."
Does Quannah Chasinghorse have face tattoos?
Quannah's mother did her face tattoos
In her mid-teens Quannah decided that she wanted a traditional Indigenous face tattoo of three – called Yidįįłtoo. She asked her mother to do it for her using the stick-and-poke method.
"It was a powerful healing moment for my daughter," her mother Jody Potts-Joseph told Vogue. "As I finished the tattoo, I felt that every poke provided Quannah with an immense amount of strength and power."
Quannah has a central line running from the bottom of her lower lip beyond her chin, and two shorter lines flanking it, as well as tattoos just below her temples and on her ear cartilage.
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What has Quannah Chasinghorse been up to recently?
The model walked for Chanel in this year's Paris Fashion Week
Last month the British Fashion Council (BFC) announced its nominees for The Fashion Awards 2022, scheduled to take place on 5 December. The accolade honours a model with global impact, a figure "who over the last 12 months has dominated the industry, with an influence that transcends the catwalk", according to the BFC.
And Quannah has been named as one of this year's nominees. She's up against some pretty stiff competition (Adut Akech, Bella Hadid, Lila Moss and Paloma Elsesser), but regardless of whether or not she takes the top spot, the impact that she has had on the modelling world in a relatively short space of time is seriously impressive.
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