United colours of Benetton

Length: 9 Pages 2158 Words

UNITED COLOURS OF BENETTON – TOSCANI’S ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS Over the years, advertising has become the single largest source of visual imagery in our society. No matter where we look, we see advertisements trying to sell us everything from food to cars. We often see images of beautiful people enticing us to spend our money on products we think we need, hoping that by purchasing the product we too will reap the benefits of owning it. Not long ago however, an Italian clothing designer named Luciano Benetton changed the face of advertising forever by employing Oliviero Toscani as chief of advertising at Benetton. Instead of showing Benetton’s products in its advertisements, they have chosen to show images related to important world issues in an apparent attempt to raise awareness. In this essay, I shall discuss the social and cultural implications of Benetton’s advertisements to discover why they have become so criticised and whether or not they are beneficial to society today. It was in 1989 that Benetton became the first company to eliminate pictures of its products from its advertisements. In their place, Benetton uses powerful images of AIDS victims, racism, war and now even death row inmates. In the same Continue...

The viewer is left with no clear impression of Benetton's view on the subject of capital punishment and nothing with which to evaluate guilt, innocence, or remorse of the condemned. Even today, well after the civil rights movement, cultural bias, hatred and discrimination are major problems and issues for debate. Before we judge Benetton for exploiting victims and showing images that we would prefer not to see, we must first realise that these advertisements were not only shown in the U. These advertisements are an attempt to bring an idea to light that people will be more likely to use condoms. His decision to completely remove the product from the advertisements stems directly from his beliefs about the problems of contemporary advertising. Names of famous world leaders are shown on the virals to show that no one is immune to the AIDS virus. One advertisement is of three hearts with the words white, black and yellow written across them. The following reports discuss three of Benetton's main advertisement campaigns: AIDS, race and death row. Two years were spent by Toscani, interviewing and photographing prisoners in various U. Our society however, is not used to this strange combination. The only problem with this solution is the lack of actual help that it can do. We cannot condemn Benetton for telling us something we already know, but instead embrace what they are saying in hopes that it will help other people.