Miroslava Duma’s new online magazine Buro 247 published an article on Russian socialite Dasha Zhukova, that caused quite a stir over the weekend. It’s Not what the article consisted of that was so alarming to many, it was the fact of what it may or may not have consisted of or signified. Dasha who is the daughter of Russian Business man, Entrepreneur and Oil Magnate and Her mother is a Retired Russian Scientist who taught Molecular Biology, Interesting huh? Well Dasha has made a name of herself as well, In 2008, Zhukova founded the IRIS Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting contemporary culture, she has launched Garage Center for Contemporary Culture in Moscow, as well as also the editor-in-chief of the biannual publication named Garage purported to “ignite raw collaborations between art, fashion, and literature” and several connections within the Fashion industry as well. But her success is NOT what has got her the topic of many conversations this week…Its the Photo attached to her latest interview that has many’s tongues wagging.
The above Photo is her sitting on an African american mannequin (NOT an actual person) , that appears to be dressed or lack of in stripper attire. Many find this degrading and many find it is completely offensive and insensitive to the African american Culture, while some argue its not racial at all its artistic vision. My question is WHEN DOES ARTISTIC VISION CROSS THE LINE? Is it a blurred line, is it a line that should not be crossed when being artistic, or creating what you see in your mind visually? I mean lets be honest , you will never be able to please everyone, and it is unfair to suggest people limit their creativeness to avoid ruffling people or a certain culture’s feathers, but is there a line that should be drawn for insensitivity, or are people being over sensitive? Should apologies be granted for that ? Next to the recent photo i posted the same type of chair only difference is it is a Caucasian woman. Does that change the affects, or the feelings associated with the recent photo? Is it ok to place a color barrier on the degradation of women? What about when we do it ourselves? Would it had been better if it was a African American Woman sitting on the African American Mannequin or on the Caucasian One?
Fact remains, our history in itself is a very disturbing reality that many either down play or disregard all together. However as a culture who is very much still affected to certain level with words, phrases and appearances of things, we should take control of how we present ourselves. Do i find the art distasteful yes, But not just because of the ethnicity of the women involved. I find it distasteful that as women our sexuality and our power that should lie in our sexuality has been broadcast as an object, something easy, all across the board. To say im offended i cant say that, because i would be just as offended as i often am when i pull up social media and see women revealing all their GOODS for no real cause at all. Freely, distasteful and proudly, allowing men, to do whatever to them for a little bit of adoration. DO I believe people are insensitive to how many still perceive the barriers in race and our history, Yes. But this will not change until WE start representing ourselves in a way we want others to.