That fashion is a reflection of the ruling Zeitgeist is nothing new. It is therefore not surprising that brands sometimes send controversial messages to the world.
Last Sunday, the Gucci show opened during Milan fashion week with a rather surreal image: models in a straitjacket slid across a conveyor belt into the room, staring lifelessly in front of them. One of the models held her hands on which you could read in black marker: mental health is not fashion (mental health is not a fashion phenomenon) . The model in question is Ayesha Tan Jones and posted a video with the following message on instagram after the show: “As an artist and model who previously struggled with mental health problems, as well as family and loved ones suffering from depression, anxiety disorders, bipolarity and schizophrenia, I find it particularly painful and insensitive of a fashion house like Gucci to abuse this topic to create a fashionable moment. I find it disgusting that Gucci uses straitjackets and psychiatric patients' uniforms in their parade, while models of a conveyor belt are rolled like a piece of meat.
The public relations officer of Gucci assured that the protest action was not planned and that it was therefore not a stunt of the brand itself.
While other guests openly defend the Italian fashion house on instagram such as model and actress Hari Nef: It was a provocative reminder of closed institutions, rather than an attempt to make psychiatry hip.
But who can best clarify the controversy than Gucci's creative director himself? After the show, Alessandro Michele told that he was playing with the idea of ' humanity and uniforms '. A uniform is something that limits you and reduces your freedom, that makes you anonymous, he went on. And a straitjacket is a uniform in the most extreme form. The straitjacket-like jackets of this show only served as props and will not be sold.