Art World Socialite and Vogue Editor Elisabeth von Thurn und Taxis Makes Instagram Blunder

Elisabeth von Thurn und Taxis at the Whitney Art Party in 2013. Photo: Vimeo

Vogue editor and socialite Elisabeth von Thurn und Taxis made a public relations blunder this weekend. While in Paris for fashion week, the German princess and socialite Instagrammed a picture of a homeless woman reading Vogue, along with the caption “Paris is full of surprises… and @voguemagazine readers even in unexpected corners!”

As a frequent writer of arts and culture at Vogue, von Thurn und Taxis is frequently seen instagramming from the world’s most exclusive art events and is a fixture at openings, galas, and fairs (see Inside the Guggenheim’s Sold Out Concert, and Rachel Feinstein and Friends Crash Madison Square Park). While her dispatches are rarely down to earth, this one takes the cake for the outstandingly-out-of-touch category.

After receiving flak from both commenters and multiple news outlets, von Thurn und Taxis initially attempted to defend her tone-deaf comment, posting: “Why cruel? This person to me is as dignified as anyone else!” Hours later, she deleted the post and posted an apology in its place, which read: “I wanted to extend my sincerest apologies for the offense my post has caused. Yours truly Elisabeth.”

A screengrab of von Thurn und Taxis's offensive Instagram upload.  Photo via Daily Mail.

A screengrab of von Thurn und Taxis’s offensive Instagram upload.
Photo via Daily Mail.

Von Thurn und Taxis is the daughter of Gloria, Princess of Thurn and Taxis, who was known in the 1980s as the “punk princess,” thanks to her outrageous hairdos, parties, and garb (see Jeff Koons Attends the Opening of Princess Gloria von Thurn und Taxis’s Art Show).

The kerfuffle is reminiscent of another misstep recently made by a member of the wealthy, glamorous art world elite—in October, collector and patron Maria Baibakova was widely criticized for a piece she penned for Russian Tatler about how to behave around one’s staff—the takeaway from which was basically, “do not, at all costs, treat your many servants as equals.” (See Maria Baibakova Is So Sorry People Are Making Fun of Her.)

They may never learn, but they should at least always have their PR reps on speed dial.

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