by Charlie Whitehand

Diesel stands up against bullying in their new star-studded AW/18 campaign, in an attempt to connect more closely with a younger generation of consumers.

The brand has recruited some of our favourite controversial celebs to front a campaign to make cyberbullying issues more prominent. The polarising faces include artists Nicki Minaj and Gucci Mane, actors Bella Thorne, Tommy Dorfman and Yoo Ah-in as well as model Jonathan Bellini.

These individuals have endured their fair share of online harassment via social media. They were asked by the brand to collate the most hateful messages they have received and use them to create their own Diesel designs. The brand is calling it “hate couture”, a play on custom-made haute couture garments.

The video promo features the celebs sporting these items that feature the hurtful words they have tolerated. Nicki Minaj’s slogan tee shouts “The Bad Guy”, whilst Gucci Mane’s says “Fuck You, Imposter”.

The brand noted that by incorporating the hurtful comments into wearable looks, it disempowers them. In a statement Renzo Rosso, founder of Diesel, said “we wanted to create this controversial irony with our clothes. It’s the way we have to communicate today. We have to do it with our lifestyle and irony. The more you expose the hate you get treating it with irony and irreverence, the less power it has to cause harm.”

The brand marks its 40th Anniversary this year and is renowned for providing some of the world’s most controversial advertising campaigns to date. Their brand values are built on provocation and have tackled issues such as religion, politics, sexuality and race.

Rosso believes that the campaigns of today are much more important. “For me, the 90s advertising was not very controversial, it was just an ironic way to see the problems. Today it’s more close to the reality of the age, where people are into social issues and can talk with everyone about this. It’s the only
way to survive — to be in contact with the new generation.”

The limited-edition pieces will be available to buy in Diesel stores and online and will include tshirts, hoodies, jackets and sweatshirts. From October 6, customers will also be able to create their own customised items featuring the worst comments they have received. The proceeds from the sale of the collection will help to support anti-bullying programmes and the brand,s nonprofit organisation, the OTB foundation.

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