Art, Fashion, and Disability: Emily Barker in Vogue

Emily Barker @ Celestial_Investments via "Vogue"

Within the fashion industry and culture, the exclusion and lack of accommodations for people with disabilities remain to be core issues. For the model and artist Emily Barker (SAIC 2010–15), the intersections of style and Instagram are sites for advocating for the inclusion of people with disabilities within the fashion industry. In an article with Vogue, Barker discusses her image and publicity on Instagram as, “a kind of weapon, or at least a tool, to gain some dignity for myself.” Her alluring style demands the attention of followers and visitors to her posts, which are captioned with statements regarding her lived experience with complex regional pain syndrome. Barker's activism calls for fashion brands and organizations to provide proper accommodations for persons with disabilities. "Barker is fighting for a fashion industry—and a culture—in which disabled people are normalized and treated with respect, whether it’s in everyday life or on the runway," states the article.