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Chanel has issued a statement following online criticism over its $1,325 boomerang, which some have said appropriates indigenous Australian culture.
“Chanel is extremely committed to respecting all cultures, and deeply regrets that some may have felt offended,” read the fashion house’s statement.
A post shared by Jeffree Star (@jeffreestar) on
The social media uproar started after makeup artist Jeffree Star posted the item on Instagram on Monday. A follower called @__reeece wrote, “[D]o you honestly not care about the cultural appropriation perpetrated against aboriginal Australians that you’ve (perhaps naively) participated in here? You’re seriously not going to address that at all?” User @abbiglass added: “Maybe Americans should pipe down and not have an opinion because this is appropriating and insulting to the indigenous Australians.”
On the other hand, there were those who found nothing offensive about the boomerang. User @chelseajones responded in the comments, “People calm down. It’s a boomerang. I’m from Australia and not once have I ever heard an indigenous person (including my aboriginal family), get upset about such things.”
The inspiration of the boomerang was “taken from leisure activities from other parts of the world, and it was not our intention to disrespect the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community and the significance of the boomerang as a cultural object,” stated Chanel.
The piece is part of the spring 2017 sportswear range, which offers a tennis racket ($1,550), black-and-white tennis balls ($475), beach racket and balls ($3,350), and a paddle board (price available upon request).
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