France launches powerful anti-domestic violence ad campaign

Jordana Divon
Shine On
November 15, 2012

Rape red. Grave green. Booze brown.

The world's most macabre house paint collection this is not.

When paired with close-up images of bruises and skin abrasions, these descriptions become a powerful, chilling ad campaign launched this week by a French anti-domestic violence group, Ni Putes Ni Soumises (Neither Whores Nor Submissives).

The images are initially meant to suggest a work of art, but upon closer reading they're revealed to be the result of assault and abuse against women. Underneath each colour is the name of the woman the lesions supposedly belong to along with her date of birth and death.

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Though it's unclear whether the women named in these images are fictional or real, we're meant to infer that their early deaths are the result of domestic violence.

As Creative Review notes, the ads are meant to coincide with the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on November 25, and were created pro bono by ad agency BETC Paris.

These ads fall on the heels of a different European country's even more shocking anti-domestic violence campaign.

The Daily Mail reports that anti-domestic violence protesters in Sweden have plastered the city's public areas with posters of singer Chris Brown's ex-girlfriend Rihanna and her battered face. The posters are fake posters of an upcoming Brown concert in Stockholm and include everything from the correct venue to places to purchase tickets.

But instead of Brown's photo on the placard, the activists have placed an enlarged image of his Rihanna's battered face from police records on the night he assaulted her in 2009.

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The intention, Vibe.com reports, is that organizers cancel the Nov. 19 concert, but so far no one has come forward to take responsibility for the campaign.

In full damage control mode, concert promoters Spg Live/Stureplansgruppen have urged people to "distinguish between the artist and the private person that is Chris Brown."

With the Elimination of Violence Against Women Day over a week away, it will be interesting to see if anyone else adds their contribution to this year's already powerful precedents.

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