Kompanero responds, says it wasn’t their intention to be racist
Two days after we wrote about Kompanero, a Kolkata-based premium leather accessory which came under scrutiny for allegedly using a model of African descent as a prop, they have reacted to comments which called them out because of it.
The marketing head of Kompanero, Aditi Sharma says, “People across the world irrespective of their ethnicities are our customers. Hence, we are constantly experimenting with our product designs, fashion shoots etc. to suit the global audience and we have worked with people from all ethnicities in the past. Our intention was to be as global and culturally varied... we chose a model of African descent with the same cosmopolitan intent.”
The Kolkata-based photographer, Arka Patra, who is based out of Kolkata says, “I respect the opinions of other people as they have a right to it, but to see a connotation of slavery in the pictures is something I respectfully deny. It was never the intention. I didn't place the models to show racist supremacy, given that the female model is brown and not white. I saw it as a play of gender, and therefore kept the women's bag on a man. If the intentions of the creator matter then this is the case.”
We, however, will let you be the judge and decide if the photos of the campaign have any racist connotations. One must also note that amid the controversy, the label has taken down some of the problematic images of theirs from social media.