Vanessa Beecroft Says ‘Emotional Stress’ to Blame for Fainting Models at Kanye West Fashion Show

The Italian artist is in hot water again.

Kanye West. Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.
Kanye West. Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Why were models, as the Telegraph notes, “dropping like flies,” at Kanye West’s Yeezy Season 4 clothing line launch in New York this week? According to Page Six, Italian artist Vanessa Beecroft, West’s frequent collaborator, says the rapper purposely delayed the event.

Beecroft choreographed the show/performance art installation on September 7, which featured an army of underwear-clad models standing in the heat on a Roosevelt’s Island field.

The New York Fashion Week presentation was set to kick off at 3:00 p.m., but the audience—and models—were instead kept waiting in the hot sun for nearly two hours before things got underway. Concerned guests took to social media to post images of models sitting down and even passing out as audience members moved to give them water, despite a reported lack of intervention on the part of West’s production team.

“The long wait before, I believe it was planned because [West] wanted the audience to get into this state of having to observe and having to stay,” Beecroft told Page Six. All told, according to the Los Angeles Times, attending the show became a five-hour marathon, once transportation to the island was factored in.

As for the apparent fainting, “that’s a production issue not related to me,” Beecroft insisted. “I’m not sure why some people fainted yesterday, but in my case, when it has happened in my performances, it was the level of emotional stress… It wasn’t physical. There was food and water. The situation is so intense and people are looking at you and you are standing.”

Models pose on the runway at the Kanye West Yeezy Season 4 fashion show on September 7, 2016 in New York City. Courtesy of Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Yeezy Season 4.

Models pose on the runway at the Kanye West Yeezy Season 4 fashion show on September 7, 2016 in New York City. Courtesy of Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Yeezy Season 4.

West also hit a nerve on social media with his casting call for “multi-racial women only.” His work with Beecroft, recently described by New York Magazine as “large-scale spectacles that make ideologically slippery use of bodies, race, and gender,” has often touched on race in uncomfortable ways.

See more photos of the fashion show below.

Kendall Jenner, Kim Kardashian and Kylie Jenner attend the Kanye West Yeezy Season 4 fashion show on September 7, 2016 in New York City. Courtesy of Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Yeezy Season 4.

Kendall Jenner, Kim Kardashian and Kylie Jenner attend the Kanye West Yeezy Season 4 fashion show on September 7, 2016 in New York City. Courtesy of Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Yeezy Season 4.

Models pose on the runway at the Kanye West Yeezy Season 4 fashion show on September 7, 2016 in New York City. Courtesy of Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Yeezy Season 4.

Models pose on the runway at the Kanye West Yeezy Season 4 fashion show on September 7, 2016 in New York City. Courtesy of Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Yeezy Season 4.

Models pose on the runway at the Kanye West Yeezy Season 4 fashion show on September 7, 2016 in New York City. Courtesy of Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for Yeezy Season 4.

Models pose on the runway at the Kanye West Yeezy Season 4 fashion show on September 7, 2016 in New York City. Courtesy of Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for Yeezy Season 4.

A model poses on the runway at the Kanye West Yeezy Season 4 fashion show on September 7, 2016 in New York City. Courtesy of Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Yeezy Season 4.

A model poses on the runway at the Kanye West Yeezy Season 4 fashion show on September 7, 2016 in New York City. Courtesy of Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Yeezy Season 4.

Models pose on the runway at the Kanye West Yeezy Season 4 fashion show on September 7, 2016 in New York City. Courtesy of Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Yeezy Season 4.

Models pose on the runway at the Kanye West Yeezy Season 4 fashion show on September 7, 2016 in New York City. Courtesy of Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Yeezy Season 4.


Follow artnet News on Facebook:


Want to stay ahead of the art world? Subscribe to our newsletter to get the breaking news, eye-opening interviews, and incisive critical takes that drive the conversation forward.

Share

Article topics