Lea T, pseudonym of Leandra Medeiros Cerezo, was born in Brazil, in Belo Horizonte, on the 19th of February 1981.
Daughter of the footballer Toninho Cerezo, she moved to Rome at the age of one, when her father was hired by the capital’s team. After graduating from the artistic high school, she enrolled in the veterinary university but never completed it.
THE ENCOUNTER WITH RICCARDO TISCI
With a slender and slender stature, Lea T began working as a model and at the age of 25, after a long journey of analysis, she decided to embark on the transition path. The encounter with the creative director of Givenchy of the time, Riccardo Tisci was decisive. He chose her for the autumn-winter 2010 advertising campaign of the French brand, photographed by Mert Alas. The model dedicated the final letter “T” of her pseudonym to Tisci as a sign of gratitude.
LEA T’S CAREER AS A MODEL
After the debut with Givenchy, Piero Pazzi, president of Women Management, offered her a contract as a model. This is how Lea T started her career and collaborated with many international brands such as Pantene, Benetton, Donna Karan, Burberry, MAC cosmetics and Philipp Plein. She was the protagonist, with Chiara Ferragni, of the Oh my gold! campaign for Pantene and Hair Has No Gender.
In August 2010 she posed without veils for Mert & Marcus on Vogue France. Her androgynous beauty stands out both on the catwalk and on the photo shoots of fashion magazines, and this made her become an icon.
Lurve magazine dedicated the cover to her, with photos by Carlotta Manaigo and officially consecrated her popularity. Another choice that caused a sensation was that of Love magazine, which on the cover of issue 5 of February 2011 published the sapphic kiss between Lea T and the supermodel Kate Moss, photographed in black and white by Mert & Marcus.
Lea T defined her body as a “political act”, through which she managed to make space between the binary and cisgender aesthetic of fashion. With her body, she has become the political and ethical banner of a more inclusive fashion, firmly supporting the need to promote bodies not only as aesthetic subjects but as a tool to convey messages and to question.
In January 2011 she entered the list of the 50 most requested and paid top models, finishing in 40th place. On the occasion of Milan Fashion Week fall winter 2021-2022, the Chamber of Fashion chose her as the face of the event’s promotional campaign.