A.P.C's F/W 15 presentation was a tense scene after designer Jean Touitou dropped multiple racists references and outright said the "n-word," then proceeded to claim that friend and collaborator Kanye West gave the portion of the collection known as "Last N****s In Paris" a proverbial hood pass. Style Dot Com's Luke Leitch chronicled the speech in his review of the collection. In the days after the presentation, Touitou and, by proxy, A.P.C., felt the backlash. A.P.C. released a statement saying that it did not mean to cause offense soon after, but the damage was done. Now, Timberland has decided to cut ties with A.P.C. and dead their F/W 15 collaborative boot due to the remarks. Our colleagues at Complex Style received a statement from Timberland president Stewart Whitney regarding the decision:
Yesterday we became aware of the offensive remarks made by Jean Touitou during his A.P.C. Fall Menswear show in Paris. We have chosen to immediately terminate our involvement with the A.P.C. brand, including the footwear collaboration we had planned for this fall. Simply stated, this kind of language and approach is in complete contrast with our values. Timberland seeks to collaborate with designers and brands who are at the forefront of lifestyle trends; equally important, they must also share our values. We will not tolerate offensive language or racial slurs of any kind being associated with the Timberland brand.
While this does mean a key piece of the collection that plenty of people were thirsty for will not be produced, it's still a big-time statement from a big-time company. Good on Timberland for the quick and decisive decision.
UPDATE: Today, GQ received an exclusive statement from Jean Touitou regarding the incident and Timberland's choice to terminate the collaboration: "When describing our brand's latest collaboration, I spoke recklessly using terms that were both ignorant and offensive. I apologize and am deeply regretful for my poor choice of words, which are in no way a reflection of my personal views."