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June 14, 2012  | by: Martha Adjei

In the Bulgarian Magazine, 12, the ad campaign entitled Victims of Beauty is turning into an international controversy. Fashion lovers and anti-domestic violence groups alike are shunning the ‘violent’ makeup ad, calling it “perverse” and “grotesque”.


The DailyMail describes the six models in the campaign as “sickening”, as they are portrayed with cuts, burns, and deep lacerations, as if to show where a lip or nose piercing was ripped off.

The photographer of the shoot, Vasil Germanov, has done work for many Bulgarian publications as well as Elle and Haarper’s Baazar. The special-effects makeup is credited to Daniela Avramova, and hair and make-up by Max Factor.

The comments aren’t all negative, however. Many people think that Germanov’s statement is genius despite its violent and gory connotations.

Nose Ring Gone Wrong

“To me this is amazing!! While some may think that this glamorizes violence, I think it makes you think outside of the square to what the photographer was trying to depict. To me it says while a woman can be scarred, she can in fact still be beautiful,”  says one DailyMail reader, via DailyMail.

Whether you like it or not, the fashion industry is full of photos that put women in compromising positions.

The question is: can violence be glamorous? Is Germanov’s statement worth the backlash from human rights groups and those outside of the fashion industry? There will always be people who don’t see the symbolic art in spreads like this.

I think as an artist, you should think about the possible impact of the material that you offer the world–especially if it can be taken the wrong way.

How do you guys feel about the gory spread? Is Germanov’s art a work of genius or does it deserve the negative backlash?

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