Katy Perry 'Saddened' After Shoe Range Designs Accused Of Depicting Blackface
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Katy Perry says she has been 'saddened' by the backlash caused by the designs of some of her shoes, which have been accused of depicting blackface.
The 'Rue Face Slip On Loafers' and the 'Ora Face Block Heel Sandals' were available in both neutral and black and featured blue eyes, a triangular nose and bright red lips. However, the shoes have now been pulled from sale.
Many took to Twitter to express their disgust at the design, which they likened to blackface.
One person said: "@katyperry are you actually serious right now?! blackface on a SHOE?? what is WRONG with you?"
Another said: "Ok, can we just make this a rule that ANY product, service or person that is NOT Black will NOT create, promote or apply any combination of BLACK + FACE? Can we just make this a thing?"
Blackface has been used in Europe and the US throughout recent centuries in theatre and entertainment to caricature and stereotype black people.
In a statement, Perry, 34, told The Hollywood Reporter she was 'saddened' by the comparison and had removed the shoes from sale.
She said: "The Rue and The Ora were part of a collection that was released last summer in nine different colourways (black, blue, gold, graphite, lead, nude, pink, red, silver) and envisioned as a nod to modern art and surrealism.
"I was saddened when it was brought to my attention that it was being compared to painful images reminiscent of blackface. Our intention was never to inflict any pain. We have immediately removed them from Katy Perry Collections."
However, many people on social media thought it was unfair to compare the shoes to blackface - with some arguing the shoes are offensively ugly more than anything.
One person said: "If you see racism or blackface on these shoes let me tell you that you need mental help. And I'm completely sure that people would complain if the shoes didn't have a black version!! Stop complaining about everything, damn it!! Grow up!!"
Last week, Gucci pulled a jumper from sale after it was accused of resembling blackface.
The black 'balaclava jumper' covered the lower half of the face and featured a mouth hole lined with a red trim, resembling lips.
Gucci deeply apologizes for the offense caused by the wool balaclava jumper.
We consider diversity to be a fundamental value to be fully upheld, respected, and at the forefront of every decision we make.
Full statement below. pic.twitter.com/P2iXL9uOhs
- gucci (@gucci) February 7, 2019
The high-end fashion label said they would turn the incident 'into a powerful learning moment'.
Featured Image Credit: PA
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