Fashion editor Gabriella Karefa-Johnson, who attended West’s show, wrote on Instagram that the shirts were “deeply offensive, violent and dangerous.”
“There is no excuse, there is no art here,” she said.
West promptly lashed out at Karefa-Johnson on his Instagram stories, posting images of her alongside derisive taunts mocking her fashion choices. He also posted a screenshot of a text message from someone who urged him not to “insult that writer,” presumably referring to Karefa-Johnson.
Hadid, who has worked with Karefa-Johnson and considers her a friend, came to her defense in the comments section.
“You wish u had a percentage of her intellect,” Hadid wrote in a since-deleted comment. “You have no idea haha…. If there’s actually a point to any of your shit she might be the only person that could save u. As if the “honor” of being invited to your show should keep someone from giving their opinion ..? Lol. You’re a bully and a joke.”
Hadid later elaborated on her own Instagram story.
“I was trying very hard not to give that man air time, but publicly bullying someone who criticizes your work on your massive platform is another level of ridiculousness to me,” she wrote. “If you can’t take it don’t dish it. If you can’t take criticism, specially the smart, nuanced, and kind criticism that GKJ provided yesterday’s show, then don’t put work out for public consumption. This is immature bully behavior.”
Hadid also shared Vogue’s statement about the firestorm. The magazine said it stood with Karefa-Johnson and that she was “personally targeted and bullied.” It also noted that West, who has legally changed his name to Ye, met with Karefa-Johnson over the incident.
“It is unacceptable. Now more than ever, voices like hers are needed and in a private meeting with Ye today she once again spoke her truth in a way she felt best, on her terms,” the statement said.
West posted about the meeting on Instagram and claimed they had “apologized to each other for the way we made each other feel” and that “she disagreed I disagreed we disagreed.”
West has been under fire for wearing a shirt emblazoned with the “White Lives Matter” phrase, which has been categorized by the Anti-Defamation League as a hate slogan born as a racist response to the Black Lives Matter movement. He and right-wing commentator Candace Owens were pictured wearing the shirts and he reportedly also had Black models wear the shirts on the runway.