Fashion bible Vogue is in strife after the latest cover of its Portuguese edition was called out as “bad taste” and “outdated”.
To celebrate summer in Europe, the fashion magazine unveiled a trio of covers on Monday it dubbed its “madness issue”.
One of the covers featured a woman in a bathtub in a hospital setting with a nurse pouring water over her head. The other two covers are featured at the bottom of this article.
Magazine editors said the confronting image was intended to “start a discussion”. In a statement, it said the issue “featured interviews and contributions from psychiatrists, sociologists, psychologists and other experts”.
However, health advocates soon lambasted the cover design, adding the depiction was out of date and it did nothing to help people who suffered from mental health issues.
Magazine bosses initially resisted calls to ban the offending cover, however, have since relented and have pulled it.
Overnight Vogue said in an Instagram post: “Vogue Portugal deeply apologises for any offence or upset caused by this photo shoot.
“On reflection, we realise that the subject of mental health needs a more thoughtful approach. We sincerely apologise for this,” the apology read.
The cover has since been replaced by a woman holding a heart. See below:
The woman in the bathtub is actually Slovak model Simona Kirchnerova and the nurses are her mother and grandmother.
Kirchnerova tweeted that the cover was a “career highlight” adding: “Made it to Vogue cover with my mum and my grandma.”
However, mental health advocates were less enthusiastic about Vogue’s efforts.
London-based clinical psychologist Katerina Alexandraki telling the BBC: “For those with experience of the psychiatric system, seeing a fashion magazine cover presenting a woman in such a vulnerable state can be a reminder of a very challenging time in their lives.
“This image reinforces the idea of women being vulnerable and helpless during a mental health breakdown. It does not show us the effort those with mental health put in to overcoming their struggles, their strengths and resistance to overcome adversity,” Alexandraki added.
The other two covers in the series:
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