This is the second time the French designer has been accused of plagiarizing Mexican textile designs.
Image credit: vía México Desconocido / Isabel Marant vía Twitter
October 30, 2020 3 min read
Senators Susana Harp and Casimiro Méndez accused French designer Isabel Marant of plagiarizing the Purépecha designs of artisans from Charapan, Angahuan and Santa Clara del Cobre, Michoacán . The textiles were replicated to make coats, girdles, and other items.
“ Cultural appropriation consists of the patrimonial use of a traditional cultural expression by companies without having authorization or mentioning its origin or providing compensation for its use. In this case, the designer Isabel Marant launches a complete line of clothing copying, literally, patterns of Purépecha designs by artisans from Charapan, Angahuan and Santa Clara del Cobre, from Michoacán ”,Mendez said
According to the senator, designers take such artistic expressions, use them out of context for profit and without any awareness of the meaning they have for populations. For this reason, the senator denounced the act as cultural appropriation and affirmed his disagreement.
Part of the Isabel Marant collection. Image via Unknown Mexico.
Isabel Marant: second plagiarism of Mexican designs
For his part, the municipal president of Charapan , Josué Emmanuel Balboa Álvare z, also repudiated the plagiarism of Isabel Marant, adding that due to this type of plagiarism artisans are "thrown in the streets" due to lack of sales. Likewise, the mayor called for respect for the cultural heritage of indigenous peoples, as well as their people.
“This person (Marant) comes to damage our tradition. They are killing our artisans, they are dismembering our skin because this craft is our identity ”.Balboa Álvarez denounced
Finally, Senator Susana Harp mentioned that it is not the first time that Isabel Marant plagiarizes indigenous communities , since in 2015 the designer replicated the designs of blouses made in Tlahuitoltepec, Oaxaca.
“In 2015 she decided to copy the blouses identically. The type of sleeve, the neck opening and the colors were identical. Now he decided to take colors, elements that are found repeatedly in many of our crafts. It is the second time that this designer –for that is her name–, makes cultural appropriation or plagiarism, so she cannot say that she did not know [what she was doing] ", Harp declared.