[Note: When first posted, this story conflated Paul Frank Sunich, the artist, with Paul Frank Industries, a business he co-founded, but left in 2005. This article has been corrected thanks to a letter ICTMN received from the artist. –Ed.]
Apparel designer Paul Frank Industries’ “Dream Catchin” party, part of Fashion’s Night Out, has outraged many in Indian country. Bloggers have done some poking around and found that the company’s use—or misuse—of Native imagery isn’t a one-time thing.
Paul Frank Industries’ monkey mascot, Julius, has appeared in a variety of cute incarnations on t-shirts: coiffured in an Elvis Presley-style pompadour for “Rockabilly”; sporting fangs for “Vampire”; and wearing horns and floppy two-toned ears for “Cow”.
Julius has also played Indian on at least two t-shirts (above); one shows him superimposed on a dreamcatcher, another has him wearing a feather headdress. (The images above come from online retailers paxangashop.com and babyshop.com.)
Tip of the hat to Jessica Metcalfe, who brought these to our attention as a post-script to her original post, “Paul Frank’s Racist Powwow,” at Beyond Buckskin.