The image of a woman’s body, prostrated on the ground, her head crushed under a large suitcase, isn’t exactly what one would expect to advertise a hotel chain.
But actress and blogger Daisy noticed that The Standard Hotel did just that in a recent issue of DuJour magazine — placing its logo subtly in the bottom left hand corner of the page.
Not only is the content morally questionable, but the edgy branding message seems off as well. Unless the takeaway is: Be careful of walking close to the hotel windows for fear of projectile luggage.
In an attempt to quiet complaints that the ad makes light of violence against women, the hotel told Change.org:
“The Standard advertisement utilized an image series created by the contemporary artist, Erwin Wurm. We apologise to anyone who views this image as insensitive or promoting violence. No offence or harm was intended. The Standard has discontinued usage of this image.”
According to Fast Company, this isn’t the first time The Standard has been in trouble for questionable advertising.
A 2012 “politically incorrect” ad campaign also featured Wurm’s work (from a series literally called “How to be Politically Incorrect”), showed many questionable images, including a man diving his head into a woman’s top and a woman urinating on a hotel room floor.
At the time, Claire Darrow, the creative director for Andre Balazs Properties justified the ad selection because the company was “surrendering our ads to art, so to speak…We want to contribute to the magazines…We don’t just want to advertise.”
Here’s a full image of the recent ad:
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