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Alexander Wang receives sexual assault allegations

Many male models have come forward telling their experience with the American designer

Alexander Wang receives sexual assault allegations Many male models have come forward telling their experience with the American designer

UPDATE 04.01.2021: After the numerous testimonies released in the last few days, Alexander Wang released a statement to the Guardian denying any kind of accusation, defined by the American designer as grotesque and baseless: “Over the last few days, I have been on the receiving end of baseless and grotesquely false accusations. These claims have been wrongfully amplified by social media accounts infamous for posting defamatory material from undisclosed and/or anonymous sources with zero evidence or any factchecking whatsoever.”

29.12.2020: Over the last few hours, first TikTok and then Instagram has become the safe space where a great number of models, professionals, students and sales assistants have come forward to tell their experiences, far from pleasant, with Alexander Wang. For everyone, in fact, the story went in one direction: many, in particular male and trans models, accused the American designer of sexual harassment

The new wave of allegations against the designer, not new to this type of accusations, started on TikTok, where model Owen Mooney told his experience dating back to 2017: in a New York club packed with people, Wang would have groped and molested Mooney, who immediately recognized the perpetrator of the harassment. Although in the first video Mooney does not explicitly mention Wang's name, preferring instead the expression "really famous fashion designer", in the comments many have guessed that it was Wang, so much so that in the following video it was Mooney himself who confirmed the identity of the assailant. The model went on to say, "Alexander Wang is a massive sexual predator, and there’s been a load of people that he’s done this to. So, in that case, he needs to be exposed.

After reposting Mooney's video, @shitmodelmgmt, an ironic Instagram page dedicated to the joys and sorrows of being a model, which also aims at becoming a safe space where to tell personal stories and experiences within the industry, found itself flooded with the stories of other people, models and otherwise, who have had similar experiences with Wang. If for Mooney the harassment had stopped at groping, in the episodes told to @shitmodelmgmt a much more severe and defined pattern emerges in Wang's behaviour, which according to what his alleged victims have told, consisted of drugs - often given to the unbeknownst victim - and non-consensual intimate intercourses with sometimes even unconscious victims, regardless of whether they were gay or not. 

@shitmodelmgmt asked its followers to unfollow the official IG pages linked to Alexander Wang, @alexwangnyand @alexanderwangny, where, in any case, the option to comment has been disabled, asking more generally to boycott the brand and to continue to tell the "truth" about Wang. While a statement or at least a reaction from Wang is still awaited, this wave of accusations has turned the spotlight on a phenomenon, that of harassment of male and trans models, rarely covered by traditional or industry media, an issue that even in that great moment of collective unity that was #MeToo never really found its space. 

In any case, it should be noted that the fashion industry has always had a lot of difficulties in dealing with thorny issues such as sexual harassment. If in some cases the alleged culprits have disappeared from the covers of magazines and the most important shootings, such as Bruce Weber, others continue to work undisturbed, hiding the stories and accusations of the experts under the carpet, boasting certain protection typical of the industry, which, especially when it comes to serious allegations, should be broken.