A fashion show convened for graduates in the inaugural Master of Fine Arts programme at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York has been accused of depicting racist sentiments.
This came after accessories used in the collection of an alumnus was seen as portraying racist values. The student in question, Junkai Huang, used enlarged prosthetic ears, lips and eyebrows as part of his collection.
One model, Amy LeFevre, refused to wear them and instead walked the catwalk without the accessories which sparked the outcry in the whole matter.
The situation has further escalated online and has begun to draw backlash from industry insiders. Fashion industry watchdog, Diet Prada, called the collection blatantly racist and chastised the Fashion Institute indicating that it shouldn’t be the models who refuse to wear blatantly racist accessories.
The Institute has since come forward and apologised to students and “to anybody who was offended by what they saw,” and has placed two academic officials on leave following the incident.
Huang has come forward to say that this was never his intent and that he is not racist. He explained that he bought the items off Amazon but never imagined that this would be the outcome.
He noted that the idea was to showcase his own body features which show enlarged proportions which should be celebrated and embraced.