Sophie Dahl's YSL Opium ad is the 8th most complained about
That controversial YSL Opium ad which featured a nude Sophie Dahl has been named the eight most complained about ad in the last 50 years. The campaign first hit the headlines in 2000 when Yves Saint Laurent decided to recruit the then red-head Dahl completely naked and sprawled out on her back wearing nothing but a few jewels and a pair of strappy sandals.
Photographed by Steven Meisel, the campaign was the brainchild of Tom Ford who was then the newly-appointed creative director of YSL. He had hoped that the ad would push the fashion house forward which was struggling at the time. It was also a nod to the label's penchant for sexual provocation and female liberation. Not only did the campaign help put YSL on the map, it also set the tone for future collections.
Neverthless the campaign did not go down well at the ASA, the U.K.'s Advertising Standards Agency. It received 948 complaints from the public which deemed it too sexually suggestive and unsuitable for children. This prompted the ASA to ban the ad and remove it from billboards. It was still used in magazines. Other brands to make the most complained list include KFC, Volkswagon, Barnados and Marie Stopes.
Speaking of the campaign, Dahl said: ""I think the photograph is beautiful... it was seen as being anti-women, when in fact I think it is very empowering to women."
What do you think of the YSL Opium ad? Do you think it is too sexual and inappropriate?