Dolce & Gabbana under fire in China for controversial promo online

Updated 2017-04-21 15:00:50 CGTN

Italian luxury brand Dolce & Gabbana is under fire for a photoshoot that people online said highlighted the ugly side of China and ignored the country's economic rise.

The controversy stems from a series of photos tagged DGLovesChina posted on the brand's official account on Chinese social network Weibo.

Promo photo posted on Dolce & Gabbana Weibo account/ Dolce & Gabbana
Promo photo posted on Dolce & Gabbana Weibo account/ Dolce & Gabbana

Shot by photography team Morelli Brothers, the images show models posing next to "regular" people such as tourists, and taxi and pedicab drivers. The photos were shot in Beijing's famous "hutongs" or old neighborhoods and around Tiananmen Square in the heart of the Chinese capital.

Internet users complained that the photos showed China's old, grimy side.

Promo photo posted on Dolce & Gabbana Weibo account/ Dolce & Gabbana
Promo photo posted on Dolce & Gabbana Weibo account/ Dolce & Gabbana

They compared it to another Dolce & Gabbana campaign in Japan, which showed models posing near modern structures and under bright billboards.

Promo photo #DGlovesChina#/ Dolce & Gabbana
Promo photo #DGlovesChina#/ Dolce & Gabbana
Promo photo #DGlovesJapan#/ Dolce & Gabbana
Promo photo #DGlovesJapan#/ Dolce & Gabbana

On Weibo, reactions were mixed.

"I don't quite understand the comparison between a general middle-aged woman and the stagy model. Only to make the model stand out? BTW, Tiananmen, hutongs are not the entire Beijing at all! Such a narrow view! I'm so disappointed at the series, especially after seeing the Japan series!" –XipaopaoerFlOrA

"The pictures totally ignored the high-speed development and changes taking place in China! This is intentional distortion." –linbiying

"What you love is not China, but Chinese people's money!" –lvelvelvekaikaiainiangao

"The photographer is just attempting to shorten the distance between the general people and fashion. The complaints are only about sense of inferiority." –fatCriminal

Dolce & Gabbana has taken the photos down, but the company has not provided any comment or clarification.

This is not the first time the brand has stirred up public outrage in China.

Back in 2012, the Italian retailer's photo ban in Hong Kong's Canton Road store enraged locals. The police barred locals from taking photos inside or outside the flagship store, supposedly to protect intellectual property.

Tourists and people from the Chinese mainland were not covered by the ban.

More than a thousand people flooded the store in protest. The company apologized, saying "We will learn from the incident and listen to the views of people from different sectors."

China has now overtaken the United States as the world's second-largest luxury goods market, trailing Japan, according to the World Luxury Association. China now consumes over a quarter of the world's luxury products.

Also in the News

Nicole Kidman Recalls Oscar Glory: Loneliest Time
Showbiz2016/06/16 13:58June 27 2017 18:27:52

Nicole Kidman Recalls Oscar Glory: Loneliest Time

Attending Shanghai International Film Festival, Nicole Kidman talks about her role in "Grace of Monaco".

Labor Day Travel Peak Starts
Also in the News2014/05/01 12:16June 27 2017 18:27:52

Labor Day Travel Peak Starts

Johnny Depp Delivers a Speech 'Evolve the Future' in 'Transcendence'
Also in the News2014/04/18 13:18June 27 2017 18:27:52

Johnny Depp Delivers a Speech 'Evolve the Future' in 'Transcendence'

Hollywood star Johnny Depp's speech in the upcoming new film "Transcendence" has been disclosed on Friday, April 11th.

Most Watched

News:
China World Business Sports Showbiz Audio
Video:
C4 My Chinese Life The Sound Stage China Revealed Showbiz Video Travel Video
Photos:
China World Fun Travel Entertainment Sports
Travel:
Beijing Shanghai Guangzhou
Lifestyle:
Live Music Opera & Classical Movies Traditional Shows Exhibitions
Learn Chinese:
Chinese Studio Living Chinese Everyday Chinese Just For Fun Chinese Culture Buzzwords