Two back to back controversies have hit ace designers Dolce & Gabbana in the same week after publicist Kelly Cutrone posted a banned “gang rape” advertisement of the brand on her Twitter account. Initiating a twitter storm across the globe, the post has left many repelled and horrified.
Earlier in the week, designers Stefano Gabbana and Domenico Dolce had invited widespread flak when they called children born through IVF “synthetic” and had expressed their opposition to gay adoptions.
(See pic) The image of the controversial Dolce and Gabbana advertisement features a muscular man pinning a girl down in an explicit and romanticized gesture of rape. The advertisement also shows three other men in various forms of undress, poised to assault the woman.
Eight years ago, when the advertisement portraying “style in gang rape” had hit the markets , it had gained negative attention for its insensitivity and had led to a ban from Italian publications. However, the renewed interest in the image is an addition to the archive of depictions representing men as ‘style machos’ and women as ‘submissive sexy victims’ of violence.
Controversial fashion shoots featuring violent exploitation of women has been in the rounds under the garb of art for quite some time. Earlier in 2010, Calvin Klein Jeans had featured model Lara Stone-being molested by a group of half-naked men in a basketball court.
In 2014, Indian fashion circle too joined the bandwagon when Mumbai-based fashion photographer Raj Shetye released his photo series ‘Wrong Turn’. Featuring a lone woman fending of advances from men inside a bus, the advertisement had close similarities to the December 2012 incident of gang rape of Nirbhaya.
Looks like someone should fetch fashion police soon to get these designers off their ideas of ‘art’ and ‘style’.