The publisher behind a controversial fashion shoot at Berlin's Holocaust memorial has apologized to anyone offended, but denies that it "trivializ[ed] the Memorial," arguing that the shoot was intended to "raise awareness" and "encourage passengers to visit for themselves."
Last week, easyJet distanced itself from the photographs — which appeared in a recent issue of its inflight magazine in a package pegged to the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin wall — by recalling the issues and apologizing publicly. EasyJet implicitly blamed custom publisher Ink, which has contracts to produce inflight magazines for dozens of airlines, saying they were "not aware of the images until they appeared in print. As a consequence we are now reviewing our relationship with the publisher and are withdrawing this month's issue from all flights."
Now, Ink has broken its silence on the issue with a statement on its website that simultaneously apologizes but stops short of condemning the concept:
Ink Publishing sincerely apologises to anyone who may have been offended by the fashion shoot in the November issue of easyJet inflight, in which a model is photographed in front of Berlin's Holocaust Memorial. Far from trivializing the Memorial, on the contrary the intention was to encourage passengers to visit for themselves.
The aim of each monthly shoot is to highlight an easyJet destination and tell a relevant narrative. The shoot was intended to not only promote local design talent and the city itself, but to raise awareness. From an educational perspective, it is of the utmost importance that visitors to Berlin see the Jewish Museum (who gave us written permission to shoot in their grounds) and Holocaust Memorial first hand. We absolutely regret any offence caused.
Note the distinction between the Jewish Museum, where they apparently had permission to shoot, and the outdoor Fields of Stelae, which is operated by the Foundation Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, where, according to the Foundation's director, they did not.
Ink Publishing Statement - EasyJet Berlin Fashion Shoot [Ink Publishing]
Related: easyJet Grounds In-Flight Magazine After Holocaust Gaffe [The New Statesman]