la belle Maman katoucha , une beaute africaine a jamais graver dans les memoires
Kadidja Niane called Katoucha (1960-2008) was one of the first Black Top model. She has been living in Paris since the late 70's.
Katoucha Niane disappeared on 2nd of February 2008, she had been living on a barge on the Seine and her affairs were found on the boat. Police are investigating her disappearance and it has been suggested that under the influence of drugs or in a fit of depression she may have fallen into the water. Finally her body has been found on February 28, 2008 in the Seine in Paris.
She is the daughter of the writer and historian Djibril Tamsir Niane, born in Conakry, Guinea. She was circumcised at the age of nine, according to tradition and her father's choice. Nevertheless he was cultivated and educted with a diploma from the University of Bordeaux and was a University rector. She was obliged to seek exile in Mali by the actions of the dictator Sékou Touré. She was raped by her Uncle and found refuge with her family in Dakar (Senegal). She became pregnant at the age of 17 after having a forced marriage. She escaped to Paris with her daughter and was lucky to become a model for Thierry Mugler.
Her luck continued and she became a top model for Azzedine Alaiä, Paco Rabanne, Christian Lacroix and Yves St Laurent. She created her own line of clothes in 1994 and in the same year presented her collection at the Espace Cardin (Paris). She went to Dakar in 2006 and started the annual "Top Ebony model" contest which can start the career of young African models. In the same year she was the coach on the TV serieds "Top Model" on the french television station M6. She started the KPLCE association association - the Katoucha association against circumscision, to stop this dreadful tradition and to look after the victims.
She has left three children (Amy, Alexandre , Aiden)