Pussy Riot-Inspired Photo Culled by Ikea
Published: September 26, 2012 (Issue # 1728)
MOSCOW — Ikea, known worldwide for its provocative marketing stunts, has decided to draw the line at a picture of masked youths wearing Pussy Riot-style balaclavas and seated on Ikea furniture.
A month into a customer competition to select the cover for its next catalog, Ikea Russia deleted the picture of four youths wearing colored masks from its website over the weekend. In place of the photo, visitors to Ikea Russia’s site now see a statement that reads: “Ikea is a commercial organization that operates independently of politics and religion. We cannot allow our advertising project to be used as a means of propaganda.”
The photograph, taken by a user called Starovoitova from the Urals city of Yekaterinburg, was the most popular in Ikea’s photo gallery at the time it was deleted, and the pictureless page remained in the No. 1 spot Sunday. It has garnered more than 1,400 online votes.
A Moscow court sentenced three members of the punk band Pussy Riot to two-year jail terms in August for a performance criticizing President Vladimir Putin in Moscow’s main cathedral. A legal appeal of the three women’s sentence on hooliganism charges is due to be heard Oct. 1, when supporters plan to hold a worldwide rally.