Vogue Brazil exec quits over ‘slave party’ criticism

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Donata Meirelles poses for a photograph at the front row of Adriana Degreas fashion show during the fourth day of the Sao Paulo Fashion WeekImage copyright
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Donata Meirelles has apologised after photos from her 50th birthday party were criticised for “evoking slavery”

Vogue Brazil’s fashion director has resigned after photos from her 50th birthday party were criticised for “evoking slavery.”

One image, now deleted from Instagram, shows fashion boss Donata Meirelles on a throne with two black women in traditional dress standing either side of her.

Critics on social media have accused her of being racially insensitive.

Ms Meirelles has apologised and denies the images were linked with slavery.

The image first emerged in a now-deleted Instagram post by Brazilian journalist Fabio Bernardo.

It has been suggested that the black women’s clothes were similar to those worn by slaves, while the throne resembled a cadeira de sinh√° – a chair for slave masters.

Other pictures from the party, in Salvador de Bahia in northeast Brazil, show traditionally-dressed black women welcoming and ushering guests.

TV presenter Rita Batista posted the party picture with another photograph, taken in 1860, of a white woman sitting next to two slaves.

“Think about how much you can hurt people, their memories, the plight of their people, when you choose a theme to ‘spice up’ a happy moment in your life,” said Brazilian singer Elza Soares in an Instagram post.

Ms Meirelles apologised in a now-deleted statement on Instagram. She added that the women’s clothes were traditional Bahian party dress and the chair was a relic from the Afro-Brazilian folk religion candombl√©.

On Wednesday, she announced her resignation in a separate post.

“At age 50, it’s time for action. I’ve heard a lot, I need to hear more,” she said.

Vogue also issued an apology for the incident, saying it “deeply regrets what happened and hopes that the debate generated will serve as a learning experience.”

The fashion magazine also said it would form a panel of experts and academics to address concerns about inequality at the publication.

This is the third racially-charged incident Vogue has apologised for this year.

The magazine was criticised in January for misidentifying journalist Noor Tagouri as Pakistani actor Bukhari.

In February, it again misidentified two actresses from the movie Crazy Rich Asians.



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