Occupy Wall Street setting for Vice fashion shoot

A well-to-do man eating caviar in a Christian Dior suit in the middle of Zucotti Park, surrounded by dreadlocked hippies, is about as 1 percent as it gets. That’s the setup for a men’s fashion spread in the newest issue of Vice Magazine, which places bespoke gentlemen in the midst of Occupy Wall Street’s encampment, before it was broken up last month. The photos, by Ben Ritter, succeed both as a clever fashion controversy-stirrer and a searing criticism of income inequality.


A Vice model wears a Dior Homme suit, Ben Sherman shirt and tie, Calvin Klein socks, and Rockport shoes. (Ben Ritter/Courtesy of Vice Magazine)

Shooting photos of designer fashion amid the semi-homeless protesters could, at first glance, be taken as a callous “let them eat cake” statement. It’s a fabulous contrast, with the clean-shaven models in their pinstripes next to bearded men in puffy coats and tents. But Vice isn’t mocking Occupy — the title of the story, “American Psychos,” shows that the magazine is leveling its criticism at the people who can afford the clothes it is presenting, just as Bret Easton Ellis did in the book that inspired the shoot’s name. Sending models in suits worth thousands of dollars to occupy Occupy Wall Street verges on performance art.


A Vice model wears a Vivienne Westwood Man suit, English Laundry shirt, Dior Homme tie, and Rockport shoes. (Ben Ritter/Courtesy of Vice Magazine)

A Vice model wears a Dior Homme suit, Ben Sherman shirt and tie, and Ray-Ban sunglasses. (Ben Ritter/Courtesy of Vice Magazine)

A Vice model wears a Theory coat, Vivienne Westwood Man suit and Dior Homme shirt and tie. (Ben Ritter/Courtesy of Vice Magazine)

The photos appear in Vice’s “Moral Compass Issue.” See the full photo shoot at Vice.

Maura Judkis covers culture, food, and the arts for the Weekend section and Going Out Guide.

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