As the controversy surrounding Virginia Governor Ralph Northam’s blackface photo continues to grow, some items from Katy Perry’s fashion line are being yanked from retailers due to their unfortunate resemblance to blackface performers from a minstrel show.
Perry’s whimsical “Rue Face Slip On Loafers” and the high-heeled version, “Ora Face Block Heel Sandal,” will reportedly disappear from shelves, with retailers apparently trying to head off any controversy surrounding the shoes.
According to TMZ, sources connected to the “Roar” singer insist the shoes were never intended to be offensive, but are simply part of a larger collection.
Perry posted a photo of the shoes to her Instagram back in August 2018 and received backlash in the comments at that time.
The sources confirm, “In order to be respectful and sensitive the team is in the process of pulling the shoes.”
Perry and Global Brands Group have since apologized for the brand’s “Ora Face Block Heel Sandal” and the “Rue Face Slip On Loafers” in a joint statement.
The message read, according to People: “The Rue and The Ora were part of a collection that was released last summer in nine different colourways (black, blue, gold, graphite, lead, nude, pink, red, silver) and envisioned as a nod to modern art and surrealism.
“I was saddened when it was brought to my attention that it was being compared to painful images reminiscent of blackface. Our intention was never to inflict any pain. We have immediately removed them from [the website].”