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Photographer: I Witnessed the Harassment Guess Models Had to Endure

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Despite the numerous sexual-misconduct allegations against Guess co-founder Paul Marciano, the fashion industry has stayed relatively quiet. According to Chris Applebaum, a prominent photographer who has worked with Guess models, that’s because agents and models fear running afoul of a powerful figure like Marciano—despite his alleged “predatory” practices being an “open secret” within the industry, Applebaum said.

Applebaum—a famed music video director and the creator and director of EATS, an Instagram-based video series and lingerie brand with more than 685,000 followers—said that after he publicly shared The Daily Beast’s reporting on a sexual-assault accusation against Marciano, from a former Guess model identified in her lawsuit as “Jane Doe,” he received several calls and messages from colleagues essentially telling him to shut up. The photographer also told The Daily Beast that he has personally witnessed alleged misconduct by Marciano and his pals.

After posting one article about the allegations to the EATS account’s Instagram stories, Applebaum said agents called him to demand he take down the post, and some models took the unprecedented step of asking for their images—which Applebaum filmed and owned—to be taken down. “I had three models asked to have their videos removed from my channel and two agents asked to remove videos, and DMs to the effect of ‘You should keep your mouth shut,’” he recalled. “I had one agent who called and was asking me, essentially, ‘Hey, I noticed you’ve gotten some stuff of our model up there [on your page] and I would love for you to take her down off of your Instagram, and I would love for you to run stuff past us before you post.’”

Agents and models bristled at a photographer publicly posting about Marciano because, the photographer said, the Guess mogul still holds immense industry power. “It’s understood why [no one speaks out]. There’s something to protect: their relationship with Guess,” he said. “There is a cache to be a Guess model. The campaigns are iconic. There are financial benefits because they’re booking paid jobs, but there’s more cachet for other brands and you’re in print magazines and billboards. [Modeling for Guess] bodes well for booking other II fashion work.”

Over the past four months, Marciano has been accused of sexual misconduct by........

© The Daily Beast

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