Should Balenciaga now be given an award? Now, that the brand is at the centre of a storm for two unfortunate (understatement) advertising campaigns in which many have recognised a misunderstood way of dealing with the issue of child abuse? Here, Business of Fashion answered the question: no. The influential fashion publication was planning to award the Global Voices prize to Demna Gvasalia, creative director of Balenciaga. The honour was, however, withdrawn. In light of recent events (and the related debate, which in some cases has gone south) BoF explained that it considers the safety of children to be a priority.
PETA, on the other hand, has given Balenciaga the prize. We have collected many clues about the self-referentiality of the radical-vegan association over the years. So far, we thought the biggest was its claim to grant noble titles of veganism (for a fee). But this one tops them all. The brand in Kering’s orbit has included in its winter 2022 collection a coat in an alternative material to leather made from mycelium. Vegan stuff, in short: something that can be exploited against tanning and that allows one to blather on about sustainability, in the way the green antagonists like. This is enough for PETA to recognise Balenciaga with the PETA Fashion Awards 2022. Because more important than any political or opportunity consideration is the affirmation of one’s (v)ego.