Joss Sackler’s New York Fashion Week show went on defiantly on Monday, despite calls for its cancellation and an eleventh-hour drama following the New York Post reporting the OxyContin heirs tried to woo former addict Courtney Love with a front row seat and $10,000.
Though protests were expected—artist Nan Goldin has staged many outside of museums that tote the philanthropic family’s names—none turned out. As one reporter covering the hoopla-that-wasn’t guessed to this writer, “I don’t think people really know this [fashion line] exists.”
It appeared that the few dozen people standing in line outside of the Bowery Hotel for the LBV Care of Joss Sackler show also did not know the dogged family’s controversy exists. “What scandal?” one man asked wide-eyed when asked why he chose to support Sackler. “Does that mean I should leave?” (He did not.)
“I am totally unaware,” Sydney Posnock, a blogger, said. “I’m not very familiar with [the brand]. They called me and this my first Fashion Week, so I want to go to all the shows that I can go to. I’m excited to view the brand’s collection.”
Juan Delgado, who was invited through family connections but said he has never met Sackler, hadn’t heard stories about the line, but as a vegan felt against the designer’s use of “exotic skins.” Still, he felt that speaking out against LBV would be too hasty.
“The easiest way for us to confront someone who has a different opinion is to shut down and hate, but I don’t think that is the answer,” Delgado said. “That’s what everyone is doing right now—‘I hate you because you’re a Trump supporter.’ Humans should communicate more to understand each other.”
Jaya Karamores’ husband works out with Sackler at Dogpound, a trendy South Village gym that counts Victoria’s Secret Angels as clients. She was “anticipating” protests, but decided to come to support her friend anyway.
“It’s unfair,” Karamores said. “She’s her own women and people should see the line before they open their mouths. All she’s seen as is a man’s wife. For her to run a business is amazing.”
Karamores is an LBV fan, but wasn’t wearing the collection on Monday. “I wish I could afford to,” she said.
Many of Sackler’s friends made up the audience—but more than a few did not want to speak with The Daily Beast. “I have no comment,” said one woman in a black and gold kaftan, in between pulls from an oversized vape.
Stephanie Unter, a freelance fashion writer and stylist, was also happy to come out. “You should be able to subtract yourself from your family and be your own person, otherwise we would all be ghosts of our family’s past,” she said. “That’s how I feel, no matter who it is. If you have parents who are jailed or are killers and you do something that's for your own good, you should be free to do that.”