Zimmermann Apologizes For Retailing $795 Dress With Traditional Mexican Motifs
By Izza Sofia, 14 Jan 2021
Image via Zimmermann
Australian label Zimmermann has found itself in hot water after it shared a photo of a model donning a printed tunic dress from its latest collection on Instagram.
The dress is part of its latest swimwear collection, and it features a cross-stitched peacock design along with panels and floral motifs. Priced at US$795, the dress has been accused of cultural appropriation as customers have claimed it draws similarities with a traditional garment of the Mazatec people from the Oaxaca state in Mexico.
Many also pointed out that the bird motif, the floral embroidery and the blue-and-pink ribbons were inspired by the textiles used by the indigenous Mexican community.
Some individuals in the Mazatec community felt that the design used on a casual beachwear garment was “disrespectful,” per the newspaper El Universal. A spokesperson from the community has reached out to its state government, condemning the dress through the Oaxacan Institute Handicrafts (IOA).
Zimmermann also faced backlash on Instagram as well, with many accusing it of “plagiarism” and “cultural appropriation.”
The company immediately issued an apology on Instagram, “acknowledging that the panelled tunic dress from our current Swim collection was inspired by what we now understand to be a traditional garment from the Oaxaca region in Mexico.”
“We apologize for the usage without appropriate credit to the cultural owners of this form of dress and for the offense this has caused. Although the error was unintentional, when it was brought to our attention today the item was immediately withdrawn from all Zimmermann stores and our website. We have taken steps to ensure this does not happen again in future,” the statement continued.
This is plagiarism and cultural appropriation. Not here for it— cata (@hotcathot) January 12, 2021
this is cultural appropriation. take it down.— Rat boy (meaner then Jen) (@imDrinking_Pee) January 12, 2021
White folks at it again, with their Cultural appropriation.— Rabi Barrera (@BarreraRabi) January 13, 2021
The design and style of the dress below comes from Huautla de Jimenez, Oaxaca. The design belongs to the very indigenous community. Shame on you @ZIMMERMANN_ https://t.co/mwEC9UBGZv
This is cultural appropriation and plagiarism. Stop stealing the designs of Mexican artisans.— Andrea Biestro (@AndreaBiestro) January 12, 2021
En este huipil se ve más claro el plagio de esta marca de "moda" pic.twitter.com/kemwAdfpOl— LIBRE PENSADOR (@ANARTAME5344335) January 12, 2021
[via News.com.au, cover image via Zimmermann]
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