As the muse of Givenchy’s creative director Riccardo Tisci, supermodel Lea T has graced the catwalk at the label’s recent Haute Couture show and stars in their new campaign. However the 28-year-old Brazilian model, and newest fashion rising-star, was actually born Leandro Cerezo and is currently undergoing hormone replacement therapy in preparation for a full sex-change.
While it is rare for a transgender model to break into high fashion as Lea has done, she is not the first to have experienced success in the industry. Last year transgender actress and model Patricia Araujo got a standing ovation at Rio de Janiero Fashion Week and was described as the event’s most spectacular model.
A fan of androgyny, bisexuality and all things that blur the line between gender stereotypes, when I first read about this story I thought that this was the beginning of something special. However, Lea’s career choice, and the success she’s experienced in it, has still provoked the anger of her Catholic family.