So I was not going to post on this, but it has been blowing up all over the internet. This has been the source of a lot of drama and outrage for the past few days/weeks. It’s the M.A.C. collaboration with Rodarte that is coming out in mid-September. I’m going keep it brief here as many, many people have gone into this issue in depth. I’ll post links of some of the articles. I think it’s important to know about this especially since there has been a reaction from M.A.C. So here goes…
M.A.C. usually does a couple of collaborations a year with designer – they’ve done DSquared, Emmanuel Ungaro, Alexander Mc Queen to name a few. This time around, they chose the design duo from Rodarte and created a collection based on their Fall/Winter ’10 offering. The ladies from Rodarte stated that they were inspired by a road trip they had taken through Texas. It would have been all fine and dandy except the centre of their inspiration is the notorious border town of Juarez. If you have never heard of Juarez, its a town on the Mexico side of the US-Mexico border where people are severely impovrished and women are brutalized. There seems to be no law and most cases remain unsolved. Google it. It’s not a good story and Rodarte was apparently draw to the clothing of the female factory workers. Uhmm….right.
Then the images and the names of the products in the line came out and all hell broke loose! Folks were infuriated and quite rightly so, there were items called ‘Ghost Town’ and ‘Juarez’ and the main promo image was of the deathly pale female with darkened eyes, made to look dead. People have been all over YouTube, Twitter, the blogosphere decrying and demanding that M.A.C. pull the collection. So much so, after days of badgering, M.A.C. sent out a statement staying that they were going to rename the collection and donate some money to a charity in Juarez.
My 2 cents? At first when I heard that the inspiration was Juarez, I was really confused. What about Juarez was inspiring? Then I thought that they were both using these collections to bring to the forefront the atrocities in that town, as they do with the Viva Glam collection, but that was not the original intention. They kinda backed into the activist side of things and that really bothered me. I think it was a poorly thought out concept and what saddens me even more is that a lot of people out there don’t seem to think that there is anything wrong with the collection or the concept and are baffled that people could make the connection. Some people think that it’s just about the names in the collection and that M.A.C. has come out with racier stuff in the past. They don’t get what it represents. Of course M.A.C. is known for pushing the envelope but this is a whole different story, where there original sole aim was to make a profit from a horrible situation. My problem is not that they made this collection, it’s that they made this collection without giving the proper context, without drawing your attention to what has been going on for years. Many people are clueless about the situation and think it’s just another ‘great’ collection. I think M.A.C. has been hit with the majority of the backlash, but Rodarte should take equal blame on this. Needless to say, I won’t go near this collection.
Check out some of these sites:
Rodarte’s explanation of collection here.
Temptalia details on the collection here.
M.A.C.’s press release on the growing controversy here (courtesy of the British Beauty Blogger).
British Beauty Blogger’s views on the situation here.
NY Mag’s position here.
Another blogger’s view here.
Hey, I agree I dont think it was MAC’s vision to bring the world’s attention to an issue and get a spotlight on the issue – like the Viva Glam for AIDS. IT wasn’t a – every sale gets a % to helping- type thing…which in my opinion would be ok. They should have gotten some spokes persons..celebs to model and be a spokes person for the campaign to bring more attention – just like Viva Glam. AND they should never have used dead looking models or named their products things like “Ghost Town”!.. I am not going to buy… Read more »
I agree! And I think a lot of people don’t ‘get’ it. I think MAC was fully aware of what they were getting into – they were aware of the atrocities (ie the ghost in the promo, the blood splattered MES). They played up on that in order to be provocative, but did not expect the backlash they received. The fact that this collection and Rodarte’s have been in the works for months kinda shows me that this made it this far because of the lack of diverse minds amongst those who can make decisions.