Another day, another controversy over a famous fashion brand’s photography. Just weeks after the now-infamous Balenciaga furor, singer Harry Styles and Gucci are under fire over a new ad campaign.
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The images in question feature Styles wearing a teddy bear T-shirt and standing near what some say is a toddler bed or child mattress, Fox News reported.
The campaign was shared by Gucci in a Dec. 12 tweet and Instagram post, with the brand writing, “A performance piece starring #HarryStyles and the #GucciHAHAHA collection.”
A website explaining Styles’ campaign proclaims, “Play is at the very heart of the collection, which uses menswear as a tool of the avant-garde.” The brand apparently teamed up with the singer due to his friendship with creative director Alessandro Michele.
“Captured by Mark Borthwick, the series of images sees Harry Styles showcase the ‘dream wardrobe’ defined by the eccentric use of romantic accents, whimsical prints, vintage details, and the expressive emotionality of the individual,” the description continues.
Critics seized upon the images, though, questioning what was happening in the pictures.
Gucci are having harry styles pose alongside a child’s mattress with a pink teddy bear shirt.— Sophie Corcoran (@sophielouisecc) December 18, 2022
Why are all fashion brand ad makers sick creeps? pic.twitter.com/jQuIjnPRXt
“Gucci are having harry styles [sic] pose alongside a child’s mattress with a pink teddy bear shirt,” commentator Sophie Corcoran tweeted. “Why are all fashion brand ad makers sick creeps?”
Others asked similar questions and cautioned better judgment in light of the recent Balenciaga kerfluffle.
“Why are you using a toddler-size mattress in this ad?” another user tweeted. “Can someone explain the concept because it’s not clicking for me?”
And yet another quipped, “Balenciaga has entered the chat.”
The shirt with the teddy bear reportedly also features the line, “I want more berries and that summer feeling,” which is a lyric from Styles’ hit song “Watermelon Sugar.”
Despite the furor, some on Instagram appeared unbothered by the photos and simply pined for the shirt or commented more generally on the campaign’s fashion elements. Read the full Twitter reaction here.
As CBN’s Faithwire previously reported, luxury fashion brand Balenciaga was under fire last month over at least two campaigns featuring photos, themes, and images critics deem disturbing, bizarre, and even “demonic.”
Controversy first broke out over the brand’s holiday collection, which featured images of children with strange and troubling props. The kids were featured with handbags shaped like bears.
These bears were wearing fishnets and leather harnesses, among other items; the images were reportedly taken by photographer Gabriele Galimberti.
CNN described the debacle as follows: “The shots … featured young children with plush teddy bear bags dressed in what looked like BDSM-inspired outfits. One child is pictured with an assortment of empty wine glasses.”
The resulting horror and furor, which spread through social and traditional media, led Balenciaga to apologize publicly. Read the full story here.
Balenciaga and Gucci are owned by the parent group Kering, a Paris-based luxury company. Gucci and Styles have not yet commented, though Faithwire sent a request for comment to the brand and will update the story with any response.
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