NEW YORK — Often his own fashion statement on the basketball court, Dennis Rodman made one at New York Fashion Week, revealing all in an ad for PETA.
The tattoo-resplendent former NBA star appears nude, in profile, in the celebrity anti-fur ad for the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. Rodman’s 6-foot-8 presence appears with the slogan, “Think Ink, Not Mink: Be Comfortable in Your Own Skin and Let Animals Keep Theirs.”
“I’m very against people mistreating animals in any fashion,” Rodman told The Associated Press Monday.
Rodman, 43, who has sported hair in a rainbow of colors and once appeared at a New York bookstore to sign autographs in a wedding dress, said he gained “a totally different perspective” after watching a PETA video.
“I’m not ashamed to show my body,” he added.
“We are very happy to work with PETA,” said Fern Mallis, executive director of 7th on Sixth and the lead organizer of New York Fashion Week. “We think that everybody’s position and point of view should be heard. We wanted to do it in a peaceful, productive way ... no more violence and paint on the runway and damaging or harming people’s property.”
“This is a democracy,” she added. “Everybody’s entitled to their opinion and to wear what they like.”
The billboard ad — unveiled Monday at the tents that house invitation-only designer runway shows at Bryant Park this week — will appear in Hollywood, Calif., and New York in the next few weeks.
In past years, PETA members have disrupted events and protested designers who use animal hides in their clothing lines. But that began to change in 2003, when PETA joined Fashion Week and presented its own line, designed by Gaelyn & Cianfarani, to draw attention to animal-friendly collections.
PETA spokesman Michael McGraw called the collaboration “an indefinite truce” and praised organizers for helping to coordinate Monday’s event.
“It will allow us to get our anti-fur message precisely to those who need to see it,” he said.
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