Volodymyr Zelensky and his wife, Olena Zelenska, have graced the cover of Vogue … something many feel has crossed the line into vanity territory amid the ongoing war.
The presidential couple is featured in a digital edition of the mag that’s all about Olena and her role in the conflict with Russia — it’s titled, “Portrait of Bravery: Ukraine’s First Lady Olena Zelenska” with photography by Annie Leibovitz. It’s a full-blown profile of her … as well as her husband, the Ukrainian Prez.
Of course, there are also a fair amount of photos of each of them throughout — including single shots of Olena, and ones where they’re together … holding hands and/or posing throughout what seems to be the Mariinsky Palace in Kyiv.
A lot of hard issues are addressed in the story, no doubt, and ya gotta figure the intention is to bring more awareness to the cause. All the same, the fact the Zelenskys signed up for this in the first place is getting backlash — with folks saying this comes across as tone-deaf.
Also … the fact that a famed celebrity photog shot them for Vogue here isn’t lost on the masses either. AL has captured the most famous faces on camera, bar none.
From a basic optics stance, there’s an argument this isn’t a good look … especially to Ukrainian soldiers in the field who are putting their lives on the line. Others are criticizing it for political reasons it seems … in any case, it’s getting a collective side-eye on Twitter.
Granted, this feeling of resentment for some of Zelensky’s choices through this time has been bubbling for a while now. Not everyone was on board with him beaming into the Grammys earlier this year — ditto for the circuit of international speeches he’s been making lately.
Essentially, some see a lot of that as him turning this crisis into the Zelensky show — while looking for press and pats on the back along the way — that’s the cynical view, anyway.
We’re sure there are a lot of Ukrainians who might have no problem with this whatsoever … and if it ultimately benefits the country in combating Putin, perhaps it’s all gravy. Eye of the beholder, we suppose.
Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky Dragged for Vogue Cover Shoot with Wife