Being a video vixen, the popular term for a video model has become a lucrative profession for some South African women but still remains the subject of much criticism.
The subculture is largely associated with hip-hop and has often been lambasted by sectors of society who believe the business perpetuates rape culture and misogyny, because of it's sexual nature.
A group of models from Ms Management spoke to Eusebius McKaiser to flip the script and explain the crux of what they do.
I think being a video vixen is pretty much the same as being an actress.— Courtneigh, Video Vixen and Managing Agent
I got started in this industry basically cause I needed to pay my way through fashion school. In terms of being a fashion designer, being on set has given me access to a wide network of clientele.— Courtneigh, Video Vixen and Managing Agent
You are a performer, you are there to tell a story, you are there to carry along the artist's message.— Courtneigh, Video Vixen
I am a producer but I started off as a video vixen and it's just so thrilling.— Sutra, Owner of Ms Management
Sharing the challenges and misconceptions they have been subjected to in the music industry, Courtneigh speaks on the sexualisation and the entitlement projected onto her body by both men and women.
It's not just guys, I have experienced it with other women as well.— Courtneigh, Video Vixen
At no point in your life can you look at someones career as an invitation to disrespect them. Its not our body, its my body. I am comfortable with my body for myself...My consent is still valid.— Courtneigh, Video Vixen
Sutra who has run the business for a few years admits that there are some women who have perpetuated the stereotypes.
If I am on a set and I see girls that have not been booked through me, you don't understand that you came here to work, everybody else gets that black mark on them.— Sutra, Owner of Ms Management
I do understand where people come from when they say 'oh video vixens sleep around' cause there are a few girls that do that, but we cant generalise and say all doctors sleep around, or all CEO's sleep with their secretaries because we know only a few CEOs sleep with their secretaries.— Sutra, Owner of Ms Management
Ms Management recently launched a campaign against rape and the problem of rape culture.
Take a listen to the frank discussion below:
This article first appeared on 702 : #VideoVixens: ‘My career is not an invitation’