There’s something cool about mothers and daughters appearing together in ad campaigns (think Jerry Hall and Georgia May for H&M). But it can get a bit awkward at times, as proven by The Lakes & Stars‘ latest campaign. It features a lingerie-clad mother and her 19-year-old daughter posed in a way that makes them look more like lovers than tight-knit family members (there, I said it).
But Maayan Zilberman, co-owner of the New York-based lingerie and swimwear label, says she wasn’t go for shock value. Instead, she was hoping to spark discussion about how different generations of women relate to one another. “For our customer…to see these photographs, you’re confronted with this feeling of ‘Who’s the sexy one?'” Zilberman said in an interview with the Huffington Post. “Because there’s always someone who’s sexier and there’s always some kind of competition going on. There’s always a tenderness going on. There’s always a tension.”
In some bizarre way, I actually get what Zilberman is going for here. But, well, it doesn’t exactly translate onto paper. The photos are actually really creepy. And the last thing I’d ever think when looking at them is, “Who’s the sexy one?” or even, “Wow, I love this bra!” Instead, I just want to turn my head away and pretend I never saw them in the first place. (Note to sales team: not so efficient.)
The mother and daughter featured aren’t actually models but rather Zilberman’s next-door neighbors in Brooklyn, who happened to catch her attention. “They’re always so loving and tender towards each other,” she said. “That’s what really drives the collection and what drives the photos: these women who are experiencing something that we’re not necessarily experiencing. I wanted to present portraits of them so that people would see the chemistry that they have.”