Rick Owens was infuriated when his “male muse” staged an impromptu protest at the fashion designer’s men’s show in Paris on Thursday, holding up a politically-charged sign that referenced homicide.
According to Women’s Wear Daily, the model, who goes by the name Jera, was walking the runway when he unfurled a cloth sign that read “Please Kill Angela Merkel,” followed by the word “Not.”
Owens and his representatives disavowed the statement, which seemed to be attempting a joke regarding the longtime Chancellor of Germany.
“I think it says Kill Angela Merkel or something? Is that what it said?” a furious Owens reportedly shouted at his staff and reporters after the incident occurred, according to The Independent U.K.
“I don’t know because it was not my idea. He pulled it out and I punched him when he came off stage. He’s been my male muse for the past 12 years or something and I think he just felt comfortable enough to do something in a show and I’m furious.”
“Please say that I punched him,” Owens told a reporter.
A subsequent release from Owens’ press office took a more measured tone.
“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,” it read.
It also asked members of the media to “omit or blur this image in the press,” a request that had the opposite effect, prompting many to post images of the incident as well as parodies on social media sites like Twitter.