After facing backlash for the lack of body diversity in the viral video for ‘Rush’, Troye Sivan has responded in a new interview with Billboard.
The video, released on Friday (14 July), has already received over 3.8 million views and attention for its unabashedly bold embracing of queer hedonism.
However, not all reception has been positive. Fans were quick to point out the video’s centring of ‘white twinks and chiseled bodies’, prompting both serious criticisms and memes mocking the video’s lack of diverse bodies.
Others have defended the singer. Charli XCX, though not naming him, tweeted: “i feel like we live in a world where audiences feel like expression or art isn’t worth their time unless it appeases every single unspoken requirement. IT IS SO BORING.”
The singer added that, “if something breaks common aesthetics it’s “weird” or “try hard”” and “if something conforms it’s “offensive” and “not diverse enough”,” labelling the conversation a “boring discourse”.
Sivan has spoken out in an interview published yesterday (18 July) with Billboard.
“I definitely hear the critique,” the 28-year-old told the magazine. “To be honest, it just wasn’t a thought we had – we obviously weren’t saying, ‘We want to have one specific type of person in the video.’ We just made the video and there wasn’t a ton of thought put behind that.”
The Australian singer also criticised the body-shaming aimed at him as a result of the video.
“There was this article yesterday, and they were talking about [the lack of body diversity], and in the same sentence, this person said ‘Eat something, you stupid twinks,’” Sivan says. “That really bummed me out to read that — because I’ve had my own insecurities with my body image. I think that everyone’s body is as beautiful as it is, including my own, and it just sucks to see people talking about other people’s bodies.”
Despite this criticism, the video has been a success.
Sivan revealed on Instagram that the positive response from fans has helped him to secure a good budget for the next video for his upcoming album.
Something to Give Each Other, due for release on 13 October, will feature contributions from Oscar Görres, Ian Kirkpatrick, Leland and Styalz Fuego. The artwork depicts an elated Troye with a naked, muscular figure sitting on his shoulders.
The album has been described as a celebration of “sex, dance, sweat, community, queerness, love, and friendship”: “Emerging from the tribulations of the last few years, Sivan found himself rewiring the joy of human connection and dance music.”