Always at this time of the year big fashion brands launch their fall/winter campaigns with their carefully produced editorials and their star photographers. This year I asked a group of children aged 8 to describe what they see in some of these commercial campaigns. The result gave us goosebumps: women are drunk and sick, men are heroes and businessmen.
Kids decoded the images and exposed wide open the implicit violence and inequality when it comes to the way women and men are treated on those editorials. Children often offered themselves to help women: “they’re hungry”, “she’s feeling lonely” or “she could die” while projected their dreams and ambitions on to the men roles: “they’re happy”, “I want to go to university too”, I’m the boss”.
This revealing document poses many questions about hidden messages that are launched from the fashion business: why do we link this kind of images with glamour and luxury? why doesn’t anybody denounce this situation?, how do these images influence our visual education?, why do brand support such messages? and what can we do to change this?