Terry Richardson Finally Sees Some Consequences After Decades Of Sexual Abuse And Harassment Accusations

by Erika W. Smith

Terry Richardson, world’s creepiest fashion photographer, has been blacklisted from working with all Conde Nast publications, reports the Daily Telegraph. In a leaked email obtained by the Telegraph, Conde Nast publications — including Vogue, GQ, Glamour, Vanity Fair, Wired, and others — are no longer to hire Richardson, and photographs taken by him but not yet published should be killed. The email reads:

I am writing to you on an important matter. Condé Nast would like to no longer work with the photographer Terry Richardson. Any shoots that have been commission[ed] or any shoots that have been completed but not yet published, should be killed and substituted with other material. Please could you confirm that this policy will be actioned in your market effective immediately. Thank you for your support in this matter.

Conde Nast appears to have made the decision as a result of criticism brought on by the sexual assault allegations against Harvey Weinstein: over the weekend, the Sunday Times published a 1,100-word article questioning why the fashion industry continues to work with Richardson, calling him “the Harvey Weinstein of fashion.”

Sexual assault and harassment allegations have followed Richardson for at least a decade, though he has rarely faced consequences. As the Sunday Times writes, Richardson has recently worked for publications including Vanity Fair, Porter, and the Wall Street Journal, and labels including Carolina Herrera and Valentino. He also attended New York Fashion Week in September and a Valentino resort collection in May, where he was seen “arm in arm with Edward Enninful, the new editor of British Vogue,” and is friends with designers including Tom Ford and Marc Jacobs.

Sexual harassment, coercion, and assault accusations against Richardson date back to the late ‘90s. Here are some of them:

A 2004 New York Observer story (which has since been deleted, but of which a piece about remainds on Jezebel) includes a mention of Richardson’s NYU colllege student intern, “ whose duties included doing his dishes and posing for photos fellating Richardson from the kitchen trash can while wearing a tiara that reads ‘Slut.’”

In 2010, Jamie Peck wrote for The Gloss that during a nude shoot when she was 19, Richardson stripped naked while he was photographing her, asked her to remove a tampon so he could play with it and coerced her into giving him a handjob.

Also in 2010, model Rae Rasmussen confronted Richardson about his abuse of young models. “He takes girls who are young, manipulates them to take their clothes off and takes pictures of them they will be ashamed of. They are too afraid to say no because their agency booked them on the job and are too young to stand up for themselves,” she told Page Six.

ALSO in 2010, Jezebel gathered anonymous accounts of Richardson’s harassment and assault from people working in the fashion industry, which, among others, included an account of Richardson coercing young models into nudity and sexual acts with the promise of a cover shoot in the late ‘90s, an account of Richardson “sexually harassing/abusing two (naked) teenage Eastern European models who didn’t speak English,” and several accounts from models who shared stories of harassment and coercion on set.

In 2011, model Felice Fawn shared a chat transcript in which Richardson asked her for sexual favors in exchange for work.

In 2013, Anna del Gazio published an essay on Jezebel in which she detailed how Richardson “ shoved his hardening dick into my face” at a shoot in 2008 in an attempt to intiate a blow job, then later had his assistant contact her and request she make out with him.

In 2014, model Emma Appleton posted an Instagram of a text from Richardson that read, “if I can fuck you I will book you in NY for a shoot for Vogue.”

Also in 2014, an anonymous model wrote on Reddit that a shoot she did with Richardson when she was 19 consisted of “random sexual things being done to me and being directed to do everything you can think of back.”

And last week, model Cameron Russell launched an Instagram hashtag called #MyJobShouldNotIncludeAbuse, to which people working in the fashion industry submitted stories of sexual harassment and abuse on set. Though none of the stories name names, commenters are saying certain descriptions sound just like Richardson.

The past few weeks have been filled with what seems like the endless naming powerful men who have sexually abused and harassed others for decades. Although I wish the naming and shaming had happened so much earlier, I’m glad to see some men finally facing some consequences for their actions.

Now, about that Woody Allen movie…

Top photo by Dave Tada via Wikimedia Commons

 More from BUST

American Apparel’s Legacy Of Hipster Sexism

Carla Bruni Says Sexual Abuse Doesn’t Happen In Fashion — She’s Wrong

Unpacking Terry Richardson 

You may also like

Get the print magazine.

The best of BUST in your inbox!

Subscribe to Our Weekly Newsletter

About Us

Founded in 1993, BUST is the inclusive feminist lifestyle trailblazer offering a unique mix of humor, female-focused entertainment, uncensored personal stories, and candid reporting that tells the truth about women’s lives.

©2023 Street Media LLC.  All Right Reserved.