WTA’s Striking New Ad Campaign: Exploitative or Just Awesome?

A new global ad campaign for women's tennis tries to capture both the grit and the glam that have become the calling cards of the sport's modern stars. And while the 38 featured athletes seem pretty happy with the "Strong is beautiful" campaign, developed for the WTA by Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, you probably won't be surprised to learn that the intentionally provocative style of filmmaker/photographer Dewey Nicks already has its critics. One blogger says that instead of inspiring young women to become professional tennis players, these ads could "make them insecure about their looks and bodies." The Huffington Post stops short of calling the campaign exploitative, but questions the "slinky" outfits and the focus on "glitter and grace" rather than "sweat or strength." Personally, I think the campaign does a fantastic job of merging the two inseparable factors that have kept women's tennis popular: unrelenting athletic power on the court, and self-confident star power off the court. If I had to pick a role model for my daughter, I'd choose any one of these women over some rail-thin, unremarkable Disney princess. Check out many more print and video executions after the jump.