|Paris obelisk with condom 1993|
Ruby was a fun idea, but she carried a serious message. She was intended to challenge stereotypes of beauty and counter the pervasive influence of the
cosmetics industry, of which we understood we were a part. Perhaps more than we had even hoped, Ruby kick-started a worldwide debate about body image and self-esteem.
But Ruby was not universally loved. In the United States, the toy company Mattel sent us a cease-and-desist order, demanding we pull the images of Ruby from American shop windows. Their reason: Ruby was making Barbie look bad, presumably by mocking the plastic twig-like
bestseller (Barbie dolls sell at a rate of two per second; it's hard to see how our Ruby could have done any meaningful damage.) I was ecstatic that Mattel thought Ruby was insulting to Barbie -- the idea of one inanimate piece of molded plastic hurting another's feelings was absolutely mind-blowing.
|Body Shop's Ruby|
Ashurst Morris Crisp is no more. Say hello to Ashurst, the rebranded, not at all fuddy-duddy, multi-coloured new legal firm. "New" is a bit of an exaggeration, especially for a business founded in 1821.What the partners have unleashed on an unsuspecting world is quite startling. Out has gone the distinguished royal blue colour, the garter logo and familiar hat-trick of names the firm has traded under all these years.In has come a quirky and colourful new logo, very 2004, backed by an emphasis on the individuality, spontaneity and (dare one say it?) irreverence of the firm's people. The sober-suited gentlemen (and ladies) are bursting out all over, handing out multi-coloured business cards as they go.