PHOTOS: Russian Activists Hold Kiss-In to Protest IKEA’s Antigay Purge

Oleg, GennadiyYou may recall how IKEA recently purged LGBTs from its Russian marketing materials due to the country’s insane anti-gay laws. Now a group of activists in New York are doing what they can to draw attention to the company’s collusion with Russian authorities.

Because the company wiped couples from their pages, this weekend the group created their own images of gay couples enjoying IKEA furniture. They popped into the chain’s store in Brooklyn for an impromptu photo shoot, sneaking kisses amongst the futons and and shelves.

The photos by Alexander Kargaltsev show the couples just living their lives, sitting around like normal human beings. Apparently these are the kinds of dangerous images that could completely destabilize Russia.

So far, IKEA hasn’t made any sort of attempt to reconcile with LGBTs. They haven’t apologized. They haven’t denounced Russia’s anti-gay laws. They haven’t pledged any resources toward standing up for civil rights. They haven’t made much of a peep at all. So, clearly they take this issue very seriously.

For a company that was one of the first to use gay families in their marketing, suddenly IKEA’s not exactly a profile in courage.

Will one little protest have much of an impact? Well, it’s hard to say. Everyone was all up in arms about Stoli a few months ago, and all those punishing laws are still on the books. Kiss-ins and boycotts are all very nice, but at the end of the day IKEA can probably rightly assume that the issue will blow over soon enough.

Still, it kind of hurts to look at the credenza in the living room and know that it was made by people who would sell us out to Putin at a moment’s notice. Oh well.


Nina, Gulia

Ksenia, Lisa, Sophie

kitchen kissing


Joseph, Artyom

IKEA hearts _ Oleg, Joseph, Nina, Artyom, Gulia, Gennadiy

Gulia, Nina

Gulia, Nina _ 2


gay iKEA teddy bears

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  • Dakotahgeo

    Dang! Sweet photos but NOOO IKEA furniture for me until IKEA “cums” around and faces up to the Soviet assholes/government!

  • 2eo

    Superb work, and adorable. Love it.

  • hyhybt

    If they want to do business in a country, they have to abide by its laws. IKEA has done nothing wrong here. Merely not using ads in Russia that they use elsewhere, but that would get them in legal trouble there, is not in any way a slam on LBGT people, a statement against anyone, or anything like that. It’s just staying out of it.

  • Stache1

    @hyhybt: Yes and if every company did the same thing about South Africa we’d still have Apartheid.

  • MK Ultra

    Ikea sucks Putin’s cöck and therefore is complicit.
    As are all major corporations funneling money into Russia.

  • balehead

    Much cooler than wasting good vodka……

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