dolce & gabanna earrings*Dolce & Gabbanna’s recent ‘Blackamoor imagery’ campaign got the company in trouble as the public cried racism.

But instead of pulling the ads, the company issued a statement, explaining the artistic creativity behind it.

The post says that the heads used in their designs are based on “Moorish” figures– “a term used to define many peoples throughout history…In Sicily’s case it defines the conquerors of Sicily.”

However, the images have set off a firestorm of criticism, rooted in the memory of historically racist periods, reminding the world of the barbaric social structure of slavery.

If you missed it, the Spring 2013 collection includes printed dresses and striped rompers with images of dark-skinned African women, appearing in an oppressive state, with earrings to match.

While many have publically expressed their offense to the new design, the artists are unapologetic and quite proud of their work, saying their intentions were never to offend. In fact, they maneuvered as far as they could away from any racist connotations.

It probably didn’t work.

Read/learn more at Refinery 29.