Elan's latest campaign under fire for racism
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Pakistan’s leading fashion brand Elan is facing criticism online after posting their latest lawn shoot featuring Mushk Kaleem and Kenyan model Gabriel Fords.
The campaign came under fire when the pictures were brought back by the brand during these troubling times and started making the rounds on Instagram and Twitter.
Taking to Twitter, owner of the brand, Khadija Shah said: “The Elan campaign gives out a message of acceptance and racial harmony. We show an interracial couple discovering an island in Africa. The island itself has been ravaged by terrorism in recent years, and bringing the focus back on its beauty will prove to be beneficial for locals.”
She further adds, “There is nothing that’s been forced or placed in the African Magic Lane shot- No people are props, they are real shop owners and the donkeys are their donkeys. Instead of asking them to vacate the photograph we just shot as it was, in harmony with the surroundings.”
The Elan campaign gives out a message of acceptance and racial harmony. We show an interracial couple discovering an island in Africa.The island itself has been ravaged by terrorism in recent years, and bringing the focus back on its beauty will prove to be beneficial for locals.— KhadijahShah (@khadijah_shah) June 2, 2020
Model Mushk Kareem also shared her statement, which reads, “This Elan campaign is so close to my heart and with its launch, it is extremely sad to see all the negativity that is pouring in. Posing alongside me, in this stunning campaign is my beautiful friend, who I had an excellent time working with, and who I also learnt a lot from- Gabriel Fords.”
She further adds: “This campaign is a celebration, and a declaration of love, of equality, of acceptance, of tolerance - of cultures and heritages without any borders and boundaries.” She said.
Here are the reactions of the people on twitter:
Every few years we have brand campaigns which are designed very poorly. They intentionally glorify customs/cultures in backgrounds of photoshoots and then deny it. #Elan 's campaign is not only derogatory in its visuals but their defense shows no hint of humility. pic.twitter.com/3d8qvDNXKU— Warda Imran Sheikh (@Wisheikh) June 3, 2020
I’ve spoken to someone about the issue:— Rabeeya (@rsbreeezy) June 2, 2020
“We are eroticising another culture for market gains hence it is appropriating said culture.”
hi guys, i just want to point out that just seeing black men/women in campaigns shouldn’t necessarily point to racism. not demeaning the brand or the girl here, but for anyone who wondering, this guy is actually a top model from Kenya. They posted him whole campaigning https://t.co/P3jONO3OZk— dar (@kingdarrr) June 2, 2020
If Elan was not being racist then why aren't any models of the African origin modeling their clothes? Do their Pakistani models also act like props in all white to focus attention on the clothes of female models.— Aimun (@bluemagicboxes) June 3, 2020
Please kisi aur ko choona lagao yaar pls.