Disturbing or stunning? Raw Mango's new 'Other' collection leaves internet divid
They say art is not what you see but what you make others see, and it appears those who have seen Indian contemporary fashion brand Raw Mango's latest campaign for its Spring Summer 2021 collection 'Other' are divided by what feelings it evokes in them. While a significant portion of commenters thought that the brand pushed the envelope a bit too far, calling the new photoshoot 'horrifying' and downright 'disturbing', another set thought that it was 'bold and abstract' and those criticizing it were simply 'closeminded'. Raw Mango is best known for its luxurious fabrics, handlooms, Indian textiles, and beautifully crafted, hand-embroidered pieces in colours that cover several shades on the palette. While the brand usually sticks to classic themes for the photoshoots, this time around they decided to go for a rather artistic and dark theme, and their followers didn't take it well. The pieces - including sarees, coats, palazzos, jackets, kurtas, shirts, skirts and more - were in the usual aesthetic that is seen by the brand, with 'acidic' colours including shades of yellow, red, pink, blue, adorned with delicate floral prints. However it was the model painted all over in red and green, their eyes covered with huge porcelain eyes that had several commenters feeling 'uncomfortable'.
The brand shared images of the collection, in one of the captions they explained the 'OTHER' collection, sharing, "Supernatural as natural. Surreal as real. What lies between. Alarms which protect. Work with the given. The Other, within." The models stood in the couture ensembles against arid deserts and dry land, the brand went on to add that the collection was "calling to the other within us all". On the brand's website, one is given a 360 degree view of the desert with the porcelain eyes set in the middle of the screen, changing colours from white to red as one moves across the screen.
Several commenters appreciated Raw Mango trying out something new, however several others were 'disgusted' and 'horrified' by the 'terrifying' visuals that the brand's page had posted:
On commenter wrote, "Loving the raw mango’s latest campaign that brings forth an uncomfortable perspective. the negative comments are quite an insight into our close mindedness."
Another said, "It’s so out of the norm.. full respect , fabulous," while another comment read, "Maybe we were put in a formidable, inhospitable condition, an uncomfortable truth awaiting our moment of epiphany. Our eyes; the only credible and non-linear source of observation. There are traditions were stones are put on the eyes of the dead. Maybe, it denotes resurrection. Spring. Numerous ways this can be explained. Kudos to the team for making a very uncomfortably beautiful point!"
Some commenters likened the porcelain eyes to those seen on idols of Hindu deities in temples, while others strongly disagreed.
One commenter observed, "Art is comforting for the uncomfortable, and uncomfortable for the comforted." Instagram-based fashion industry watchdog Diet Sabya also participated in the discussion asking its followers what they thought about the campaign, sharing a poll that showed that 59% of their followers loved the campaign, while the remaining 41% hated it. In the post Diet Sabya asked, "Raw Mango's latest campaign causes a stir. Is fashion art? Is this too distracting? Do we want to only see basic, boring and pretty? Discuss.
The caption queried, "Are we ready for boundary-pushing aesthetic or nah? Or is this too EdgY for the @raw_mango buying customer?" One comment read, "Well honestly it just seems like guerrilla marketing tactic. social media is saturated. how to create a buzz? be eccentric and not your usual self. the collection seems like a bunch of old motifs and prints brought back in vivid colour schemes. . thats my 2 cents." While another disagreed saying, "People are so used to see skin or clear skin. Hence i think it's very jarring and uncomfortable, and the eyes is straight of GOT funeral scenes. But I think it's bold and abstract."
What do you think of the campaign? Do you love it or hate it?