Bridging the GAP – AD Campaign celebrating Diversity – A Film by Edward Enninful

T-minus-two months to go until Edward Enninful takes the reigns at British Vogue, and in the meantime, the W creative and fashion director is keeping busy. Most recently, the Ghanaian-born fashion editor donned his G-A-P-emblazoned director’s cap for a certain American heritage brand. The industry icon cast, styled and directed Gap’s newest ad, an homage to the eternal wardrobe staple that is the basic white tee.

The British stylist has had a long history in the industry on both sides of the pond. Cutting his teeth at i-D, Enninful featured some of the most important faces in fashion, from Twiggy to Naomi Campbell, before moving to New York to become fashion and style director at W magazine.

“Growing up, I loved the imagery I saw from America as it celebrated being the land of the free and home of the brave,” Enninful says of how his fascination with the United States while he was young influenced “Bridging the Gap.” “This project is about authenticity and people living their truths.”

Dressed, of course, in Gap’s iconic white T-shirts, the cast was handpicked by Enninful to be representative of American optimism. Always on the pulse of the cultural zeitgeist, his selection of change-making women — like Brit model and Gurls Talk founder Adwoa Aboah and actress and activist Yara Shahidi, who both use their platform to speak out on important issues facing young women and people of color today — makes the campaign a party of positivity and self-expression. “It’s about knowing yourself, which takes time,” Adwoa explained, “but I do it by being myself 100% of the time.”

“Gap is a quintessentially American brand and we strive to embody all of America in everything we do,” Gap’s chief marketing officer, Craig Brommers, said in a statement. “‘Bridging the Gap’ is about showing the many faces of what it means to be an American and bringing all of those sides together.” In a country that can often feel divided, this is an uplifting look at the diversity and spirit of the USA. As model, designer and cast member of the campaign Alek Wek says, it’s “about not just celebrating culturally, but also universally.”

This is Enninful’s directorial debut, something we’re hoping to see more of when he takes the helm at BritishVogue in August. The stylist has always championed diversity in his editorial shoots and campaigns, and “Bridging the Gap” is no different: “Edward is the perfect partner in this project as he and Gap share an optimistic view of the world,” Brommers explains.

So, if you’re in need of a little positivity today, watch the video below. As pink-haired model Fernanda Ly says, “whatever makes you happy makes you you.” We defy you not to dance.

Bridging GAP Gang by Edward Enninful
GAP Gang: (Lft) Jasmine Sanders, Alek Wek, Fernanda Ly, Jonathan Groff, Ellen Rosa, Casil McArthur, Wiz Khalifa, Edward Enninful, Priyanka Chopra, Adwoa Aboah, Chrstie Brinkley, Lineisy Montero, Yara Shahidi, Maria Borges and Miles Chamley-Watson.

Behind the scenes

Edward Enninful
Edward Enninful

elle.com / gap.com / refinery29.com

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