Rick Owens Denounces Protesting Model at Men's Show

The designer says he had nothing to do with one model's decision to protest Angela Merkel on the runway.
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Maura Brannigan
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The designer says he had nothing to do with one model's decision to protest Angela Merkel on the runway.
The finale of Rick Owens' men's show in Paris this morning. Photo: Thierry Chesnot/Getty Images

The finale of Rick Owens' men's show in Paris this morning. Photo: Thierry Chesnot/Getty Images

Rick Owens' ready-to-wear shows — be they men's or women's — are famed for always pushing boundaries and defying convention. There was the step dance team that replaced models on his spring 2014 catwalk, and the strategically placed crotch holes he sent careening down his fall 2015 runway. At his men's show in Paris Thursday morning, the designer served up yet another unexpected moment — but this time, it wasn't intentional.

Halfway through the presentation, a model whom Women's Wear Daily called "Jera" presented a small banner with "Please Kill Angela Merkel — Not" scrawled in capital letters, referring to the German chancellor. In a statement, included below, the design house confirmed the message was unsanctioned and not to be associated with the Rick Owens brand.

"Rick Owens does not claim responsibility for the act of protest by a model at the Spring Summer 2016 show. This was an independent statement and does not reflect the opinion of the house of Rick Owens."

Owens also told multiple publications that he literally punched Jera as he came off stage. It's probably safe to say this model won't be walking another Rick Owens show anytime soon.