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A.P.C. Founder Says N-Word Repeatedly During Show in Paris

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Photo via <a href="https://twitter.com/whoisRodneyO/status/559029407437041665">@Rodney Oneal/</a>Twitter
Photo via @Rodney Oneal/Twitter

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It sounds like A.P.C.'s fall menswear show was extremely uncomfortable, thanks to founder Jean Touitou's bizarre live narration which included repeated use of the N-word. According to Style.com, things went off the rails as Touitou introduced the brand's collab with Timberland:

Touitou ushered in a quartet of models wearing three different cuts of a camel overcoat and one check, all matched with gray sweatpants and A.P.C.-designed Timberlands. Then he held up a sign that said, "Last Ni##@$ IN PARIS," and gave us this exposition: "I call this one look Last N****s in Paris. Why? Because it's the sweet spot when the hood—the 'hood—meets Bertolucci's movie Last Tango in Paris. So that's 'N****s in Paris' and Last N****s in Paris. [Nervous laughter from audience.] Oh, I am glad some people laughed with me. Yes, I mean, it's nice to play with the strong signifiers. The Timberland here is a very strong ghetto signifier. In the ghetto, it is all the Timberlands, all the big chain. Not at the same time—never; it's bad taste. So we designed Timberlands with Timberland…" And on he went. Touitou likes to be irreverent. But what he said here seemed ill considered, at the very least.

Style.com emailed Touitou to ask him to clarify what he meant, and he explained further, writing:

"I made looks which are a cross-over of those two references: the Timberland shoes and the sweat pants are iconic of hip-hop, and the camel hair color coat, worn with nothing under it, is iconic of that precise movie. I am friends with Kanye [West, who recorded "Ni**as in Paris" with Jay Z], and he and I presented a joint collection at the same place, one year ago, and that this thing is only a homage to our friendship. As a matter of fact, when I came up with this idea, I wrote to him, with the picture of the look and the name I was giving to it, and he wrote back immediately saying something like, 'I love this vibe.'"
Yes, Touitou worked with West, and yes, it's a song lyric, but regardless, he held up a sign with a slur written on it at a fashion show.
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