Demna Addresses Balenciaga's Ad Campaign Controversy

“It was inappropriate to have kids promote objects that had nothing to do with them.”

Fashion
11,046 Hypes 10 Comments

After earning the ire of the internet with a controversial holiday campaign featuring children holding plush bear bags with BDSM-inspired harnesses and handcuffs, Balenciaga‘s creative director Demna has broken his silence with a “personal message” on the matter.

In his statement, he wrote, “I want to personally apologize for the wrong artistic choice of concept for the gifting campaign with the kids and I take my responsibility. It was inappropriate to have kids promote objects that had nothing to do with them.”

“As much as I would sometimes like to provoke a thought through my work, I would NEVER have an intention to do that with such an awful subject as child abuse that I condemn. Period.”

“I need to learn from this, listen and engage with child protection organizations to know how I can contribute and help on this terrible subject.”

He concluded, “I apologize to anyone offended by the visuals and Balenciaga has guaranteed that adequate measures will be taken not only to avoid similar mistakes in the future but also to take accountability in protecting child welfare in every way we can.”

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Demna (@demna)

The Gift Shop campaign, shot by Gabriele Galimberti, quickly received widespread backlash across the internet, with one photo featuring a child holding the aforementioned teddy bear bag, alongside inappropriate accessories, including a chain leash and a dog collar choker.

Additionally, the brand has been called out for its previous adidas collaboration campaign, which included an excerpt from a 2008 U.S. Supreme Court ruling, United States v. Williams, that upheld penalties for the sexual exploitation of children and additional forms of child abuse.

The brand previously issued an apology and removed the campaign from all platforms. Balenciaga has also filed a lawsuit against the production company behind its Spring 2023 ad campaign, seeking damages of at least $25 million USD from North Six, Inc. and set designer Nicholas Des Jardins.

Elsewhere, Dior has tapped Denim Tears’ Tremaine Emory for a special fall capsule.

Read Full Article

What to Read Next

Balenciaga Issues Statement on Ad Campaign Controversy, Will Not Pursue Litigation Against Production Company
Fashion

Balenciaga Issues Statement on Ad Campaign Controversy, Will Not Pursue Litigation Against Production Company

The statement also notes the company will put “new control instances” into practice and that executives will go on a “listening tour.”

Despite Ongoing Controversy, Balenciaga Products Are Still Selling Out
Footwear

Despite Ongoing Controversy, Balenciaga Products Are Still Selling Out

As proven by the House’s $1,400 USD Steroid Boot.

Balenciaga Sues Production Company Behind Controversial Campaign for $25 Million USD
Fashion

Balenciaga Sues Production Company Behind Controversial Campaign for $25 Million USD

Seeking at least a quarter of a $100 million in damages from North Six Inc. and set designer Nicholas Des Jardins.


Balenciaga Pulls Ad Campaign Featuring Children Holding Inappropriate Plush Bear Bags
Fashion

Balenciaga Pulls Ad Campaign Featuring Children Holding Inappropriate Plush Bear Bags

The brand issued an apology after being accused of sexualizing children.

Netflix Is Reportedly Growing Its Pool of Early Feedback Viewers
Entertainment

Netflix Is Reportedly Growing Its Pool of Early Feedback Viewers

Adding “tens of thousands” of users globally.

Yinka Ilori's London Pop-Up Store Channels His British-Nigerian Roots
Design 

Yinka Ilori's London Pop-Up Store Channels His British-Nigerian Roots

Packed with rich hues and geometric displays.

Triumph’s Moto-Inspired Menswear Makes a Return in FW22 Lifestyle Collection
Fashion 

Triumph’s Moto-Inspired Menswear Makes a Return in FW22 Lifestyle Collection

Presented by Triumph Lifestyle
With classic styles to transition across the seasons.

The Air Jordan 9 "Fire Red" Has A New Release Date
Footwear

The Air Jordan 9 "Fire Red" Has A New Release Date

A smokin’ take on Michael Jordan’s ninth signature sneaker.

Milk Bar and The Original Donut Shop Unite for a Slew of Holiday Treats
Food & Beverage

Milk Bar and The Original Donut Shop Unite for a Slew of Holiday Treats

Bringing a dash of sweetness to your holiday dinner.


Sense of Symmetry's Stan Smith Wing Tip Is A Formal Footwear Grand Slam
Footwear

Sense of Symmetry's Stan Smith Wing Tip Is A Formal Footwear Grand Slam

Crafted using only the finest Italian leathers.

Make Your Uniform Très Bien everywear SS23
Fashion

Make Your Uniform Très Bien everywear SS23

Delivering woolen coats, cozy sweats and flannel essentials.

Stüssy and Our Legacy WORK SHOP Combat the Cold With a Yin-Yang Reversible Vest
Fashion

Stüssy and Our Legacy WORK SHOP Combat the Cold With a Yin-Yang Reversible Vest

Boasting a black and white design stamped with the Chinese symbol.

La Nausée Is London's Latest Vintage Designer Destination
Fashion 

La Nausée Is London's Latest Vintage Designer Destination

Bringing archive Raf Simons, Helmut Lang, COMME des GARÇONS and more.

The sacai x Nike Cortez Zoom in "Iron Grey" Receives Official Release Date
Footwear

The sacai x Nike Cortez Zoom in "Iron Grey" Receives Official Release Date

Chitose Abe and Nike add another pair to their collaborative catalog.

More ▾
 
Subscribe to our Newsletter

Gain access to exclusive interviews with industry creatives, think pieces, trend forecasts, guides and more.

By subscribing, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Looks like you’re using an ad-blocker

We charge advertisers instead of our readers. Support us by whitelisting our site.

Whitelist Us

How to Whitelist Us

screenshot
  1. Click the AdBlock icon in the browser extension area in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. Under “Pause on this site” click “Always”.
  3. Refresh the page or click the button below to continue.
screenshot
  1. Click the AdBlock Plus icon in the browser extension area in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. Block ads on – This website” switch off the toggle to turn it from blue to gray.
  3. Refresh the page or click the button below to continue.
screenshot
  1. Click the AdBlocker Ultimate icon in the browser extension area in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. Switch off the toggle to turn it from “Enabled on this site” to “Disabled on this site”.
  3. Refresh the page or click the button below to continue.
screenshot
  1. Click the Ghostery icon in the browser extension area in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. Click on the “Ad-Blocking” button at the bottom. It will turn gray and the text above will go from “ON” to “OFF”.
  3. Refresh the page or click the button below to continue.
screenshot
  1. Click the UBlock Origin icon in the browser extension area in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. Click on the large blue power icon at the top.
  3. When it turns gray, click the refresh icon that has appeared next to it or click the button below to continue.
screenshot
  1. Click the icon of the ad-blocker extension installed on your browser.You’ll usually find this icon in the upper right-hand corner of your screen. You may have more than one ad-blocker installed.
  2. Follow the instructions for disabling the ad blocker on the site you’re viewing.You may have to select a menu option or click a button.
  3. Refresh the page or click the button below to continue.