More than 50 years since strumming their first note, the Rolling Stones are still pushing the envelope.
Now, even in the midst of dealing with potential strikes and and continuous criticisms of its service, the London Underground has found time to ban a poster advertising the British band’s upcoming gallery show, “Exhibitionism.”
According to the UK Guardian, Transport for London, the government body responsible for London’s metro system and bus lines, have refused to show the advert — which shows a woman’s lower body in a bikini bottom with the band’s famous lips logo strategically placed — until the band creates a less lewd version.
Transport for London told the band it will only display the poster if the logo is moved onto the woman’s belly button. This amended version will go up across London on Monday, July 13.
Clear Channel, the advertising authority that oversees advertising on the city’s transport network, said the compromise was reached “quickly amicably.”
It’s far from being the first time the Rolling Stones have seen their share of controversy — in fact, the band has often invited it. The tongue-and-lips logo itself is intended to symbolize the band’s “anti-authoritarian attitude, Mick’s mouth and the obvious sexual connotations.”
But how did the band’s members feel about the recent poster ban?
“We are dumbfounded and perplexed at this rather silly decision,” a Rolling Stones spokesman said. “Perhaps something to do with the fact that it’s the Rolling Stones and controversy still seems to follow them everywhere.”
“Exhibitionism,” a two-floor, career-spanning art exhibit featuring more than 500 artifacts from Stones lore, is set to open London’s Saatchi Gallery in April 2016. Tickets went on sale Friday.
Although Transport for London has banned the original poster from the London Underground and London’s bus system, the un-amended advertisement is still standing across the rest of the UK, and appears extensively across the band’s website and social media platforms.
When it takes just 50 milliseconds — or 0.05 seconds — for someone to form an opinion about a website, this ad is certainly one way to leave a lasting impression.