BANGKOK — Motor Expo 2017 got underway Friday at Impact Muang Thong Thani, and with it a read of the cultural barometer that is how the promotional models are dressed.
A trend toward more conservative attire that saw promotional models, or pretties, cover up while the nation was in mourning has endured, with models eschewing overtly sexual clothing in favor of more demure evening gowns or casual wear.
This time last year, when Thailand had just entered mourning following the October 2016 death of King Bhumibol, the sexually charged and often scandalous pretties traded in their latex corsets for long black dresses. This past March, the models sought a balance between the two, wearing sci-fi cocktail dresses and lacy black gowns.
The revealing attire drew legions of amateur photographers who shared a symbiotic relationship with the models and were little interested in the vehicles on display. The open displays of female sexuality were long been a source of contention for the Culture Ministry, which regularly crusaded against the revealing outfits on the basis they damaged the nation’s reputation.
Motor Expo 2017 runs now through Dec. 11.