The UK’s Advertising Standards Authority has banned a Calvin Klein ad that featured a British singer, stating that it portrayed her as a “stereotypical sexual object.”
The advertisement showcased the musician wearing a shirt that was draped over her body, exposing a portion of her breast and the side of her buttocks. The caption read “Choose Calvins or nothing.”
Two individuals raised concerns regarding the image, stating that it portrayed her in a sexual manner. The ASA concurred with this, stating: “The advertisement utilized nudity and focused on FKA twigs’ physical appearance rather than the clothing itself, to the point where it objectified her as a sexual stereotype.” They also noted that the composition of the image drew attention to the model’s body rather than the advertised clothing.
The ASA deemed the advertisement as “irresponsible and potentially offensive.” Their decision states that the ad, initially released in April 2023, “cannot be shown in its current form.”
Two individuals who made complaints also expressed disapproval towards two advertisements by Calvin Klein that showcased model Kendall Jenner. However, the ASA determined that these ads were acceptable. They stated that one ad, in which Jenner is shown holding her breasts, did not depict her as a sexual object. Additionally, the other ad was within the guidelines for appropriate lingerie advertising.
Calvin Klein has stood by the FKA twigs advertisement, stating that the visuals were not offensive and portrayed two self-assured and empowered women who aligned themselves with the Calvin Klein brand. They maintained that the stances taken by both twigs and Jenner were organic and unbiased.
The company emphasized that both FKA twigs and Jenner worked together with them and gave their approval for the images. In interviews, they expressed feeling empowered and confident after participating. Calvin Klein also made sure to point out that male models were also included in the campaign.
Singer FKA twigs, known for embracing her sexuality and femininity in her songs and shows, has not addressed the ban publicly.
In her recent Instagram post, she shared that she has been working on her upcoming album in various locations such as cabs in Berlin, huts in Big Sur, caves in Ibiza, and roads in Hackney. She also mentioned writing lyrics by lakes in Prague and even in the toilets of raves with a pen on her hand. This album will serve as a follow-up to her 2022 mixtape Caprisongs and her previous two studio albums, LP1 (2014) and Magdalene (2019).