Sorry, André Balazs, but The Standard is maybe the least “edgy” boutique hotel chain of all time. Sure, it’s got the name recognition, the possibility of a celebrity sighting (or reality television star, same thing), the luxurious atmosphere, the astronomical price tag … but edgy, or even niche, it is not. And even if it were, its latest ad campaign’s use of a photograph (part of a series by Erwin Wurm, titled “One Minute Sculptures”) depicting a woman crushed on concrete by a suitcase (above) would still be in egregiously poor taste. The women behind Make Me A Sammich have started a petition to push The Standard Hotels and DuJour, the publication in which the ad was published, to release an official apology addressing the ad and its apparent trivialization of violence against women. To quote Rosie of Make Me A Sammich:
I need to point out for anyone not clear on the concept that by using violence against women for something as crass as attempting to lure people to your “boutique” hotel chain these companies are helping to perpetuate the cycle of violence. They are normalizing it—treating it as something trivial, not worth taking seriously. Treating it as a joke. That teaches everyone regardless of gender that violence against women is No Big Deal. These messages in our media teach women to expect violence and teach men prone to violence against women that what they do is socially acceptable.