Serena Williams can’t seem to catch a break as of late. Instead of celebrating being featured on the cover of GQ’s Men of The Year issue, Twitter is more focused on designer Virgil Abloh’s use of quotation marks.
GQ decided to shake the table with its annual Men of The Year issue by selecting Serena Williams for one of four covers. She looks absolutely amazing on the cover, but that’s not where the problem lies. The controversy stems from the word men crossed out and replaced by “woman.”
Immediately that raised eyebrows and had folks on Twitter questioning GQ about the decision calling the move disrespectful and wondering how could they allow such a thing to happen? What they glossed over was the fact the cover was handwritten by the chief executive officer of OFF-WHITE, Virgil Abloh who worked with Serena and designed her infamous tutu with the word “Logo” and Nike sneakers. Those familiar with the brand quickly pointed out that he has a penchant for using quotation marks.
In an interview with 032c, Abloh explained his use of quotations stating to the publication:
“You can use typography and wording to completely change the perception of a thing without changing anything about it. If I take a men’s sweatshirt and write “woman” on its back, that’s art.”
Even though now we have some context some folks still believe that being Serena is constantly facing backlash for situations the decision to write “woman” on the cover was in poor taste. As expected, there are hot takes are being thrown all over Twitter about the cover. Hit the gallery below to see what people are saying about the cover.
Photo: Tim Clayton – Corbis / Getty