Luiza Albrecht ADV 400 Nolita Presentation Fall 2007
You just saw this billboard on the street…
What is it trying to communicate?
Positive message? Negative message? Why?
Nolita is an Italian fashion brand
The anorexic model is Isabelle Caro
The famous photographer is Oliviero Toscani
The ads (only 2 billboards) debuted on September 19th (2007) for the beginning of the Milan Fashion Week
“ The subject chosen to convey this message, in particular for young women who follow fashion, is that of a young girl who has fallen victim to the sickness which […] affects as many as two million people in Italy alone.”
“ Toscani has literally laid his subject bare, to show the reality of this sickness to all through this naked body, a sickness that in most cases is caused by the stereotypes imposed on women by the fashion world.”
Ruth Striegel-Moore of Wesleyan University found that whites are more likely than blacks to suffer from bulimia (23 cases to 4) and anorexia (15 to 0)
The stereotypical high fashion model is white, especially when it comes to advertisements for Italian labels (as we have seen in previous presentations). Did they want to use someone who could be your “average” model if it weren’t for her extreme anorexia?
“ From 90 to 95% of anorexics and bulimics are women” (The Beauty Myth, 181)
“ Each year, according to the [American Anorexia and Bulimia Association], 150,000 American women die of anorexia” (The Beauty Myth, 182)
“ Half the women on campuses in the US suffer at some time from bulimia or anorexia” (The Beauty Myth, 182)
1% of British girls are anorexic and 50% of the women suffer from disordered eating (The Beauty Myth, 183)
The fashion world is “female”
About the Model
French Model and Actress
25 years old, has anorexia since the age of 13
Says she became anorexic because of a hard childhood
She weights about 67 lbs. now, versus 55 lbs. at the time of the campaign
Has been hospitalized several times and was in a coma a year ago
"I've hidden myself and covered myself for too long. Now I want to show myself fearlessly, even though I know my body arouses disgust. I want to recover because I love life and the riches of the universe. I want to show young people how dangerous this illness is."
http: //youtube .com/watch?v=VS2mfWDryPE
About the Photographer
Won several awards
Worked for Chanel and Vogue, among other famous brands
Photographed for Bennetton from 1982 to 2000; he’s the mind (and camera) behind numerous controversial ads for the brand
Toscani’s Controversial Campaigns
"This is a subject that needed light shined upon it. Art in general has to provoke; I think it's wrong that fashion glorifies women who are too thin, and this is an example of someone who has taken it to an extreme.”
"Looking at my ads, girls with anorexia would say to themselves that they have to stop dieting. When you do something extreme, there are always people who oppose it. It shouldn't be the photos that shock, but the reality." (Time magazine)
Do you agree? Will this motivate girls to stop dieting, or make them want to diet even more?
Brazilian model Ana Carolina Reston died of complications from anorexia in 2006 (she was 21). Her diet consisted of apples and tomatoes. Her body mass was 13.4, below what the World Health Org. considers to be starvation .
Luisel Ramos, a 22-year-old Uruguayan model, suffered a heart attack in August after living on lettuce and Diet Coke for three months. She died during Uruguay’s Fashion Week 2006.
Since then, some in the fashion business have tried to force the industry to reflect on what it could do to improve its image.
Madrid's Fashion Week 2006 turned away underweight models after protests that girls and young women were trying to copy their rail-thin looks and developing eating disorders.
Italy's fashion-trade organization -- which organizes the Milan twice-yearly fashion shows -- and the Italian government drafted a set of guidelines intended to get fashion houses and magazines to use healthier-looking models.
“ Twenty-year-old Miss England, Georgia Horsley, has a figure many women envy.
But the size-eight model, originally from North Yorks, England, has been told to “fatten up” if she wants a shot at winning the Miss World pageant, the Daily Mail reported Tuesday.
The organizers of the pageant, to be held Dec. 1 in Sanya, China, reportedly are looking for contestants with more voluptuous body types — ones representative of the average woman.” (Fox News)
What do you think? Positive message?
More from Nolita
More from Nolita
This model is thinner than 95% of the population!
Is Nolita being hypocritical?
"Anorexia has reasons which are not linked to fashion. Even people who take no notice of fashion get anorexic.” - Giorgio Armani
"This girl needs to be in a hospital, not at the forefront of an advertising campaign." -Fabiola De Clercq, founder and president of ABA, the Italian association against anorexia, bulimia and obesity
"It's not something that we need to see. That kind of thing is so personal we don't need to show it -- we all know what [anorexia] is, we all know what it looks like. There are so many ways to get the message across without having such shock value.” - Alessandra Facchinetti, creative director of women's wear for Valentino
"The campaign sets off an alarm, and it's a loud one, I am happy the ad is being talked about. Whether it's positive or negative, at least the issue is getting some real attention." - Luisa Bertoncello, managing director of Nolita's parent company, Flash&Partners
Yours: Who do you agree with?
The Bennetton ads, for the most part, bring up topics that aren’t directly connected to the fashion industry, which is why they received so much criticism. To what level is anorexia tied to the fashion industry? Is it appropriate to try to deal with the topic in a campaign like this one?
Does it help the brand somehow?
Yes, the images have a lot of impact. But, will girls be able to connect this to models that are not quite there? Will they still want to look like the average model, whose anorexia isn’t usually portrayed as something unusual?