Childish Gambino has been accused of mistreatment by the people who worked on the artwork for his album ‘Awaken, My Love!’, including the woman who appeared on the cover.
Giannina Antonette Oteto appeared on the cover of Gambino’s 2016 album wearing a beaded headdress and she alleged in a statement posted to Facebook that she and the stylist and makeup artist who worked on it were “[taken] advantage of and lied to”, especially in the way of pay.
“Being able to hold an album that I’m on the cover of,” Oteto wrote alongside a picture of her holding a vinyl pressing of Childish Gambino’s album, which appears to have since been deleted. “And having my bestie mom next to me to celebrate! My number 1 cheerleader! This album has been so hard for me to celebrate for many reasons, and for years I resented it even. It put me through a lot but finally being able to celebrate it means a lot!
“Update: I resented it because myself, the makeup artist, and stylist (all black women) were [taken] advantage of and lied to.
Model Giannina Antonette Oteto from Childish Gambino’s “Awaken, My Love!” album cover says he took advantage of her:
“myself, the makeup artist, and stylist (all black women) were [taken] advantage of and lied to. We received low pay but were promised residuals but never… pic.twitter.com/rIljdoy8RZ
— Pop Crave (@PopCrave) December 27, 2023
“We received low pay. [They] promised residuals. But [we] never received anything,” she continued. “The only person who received residuals was a white woman who created the headpiece even though she was not on set to work on this (but she also deserves it). After years of lies and silence then finding out statute of limitation complications… it’s been an exhausting, emotional, and overall sad thing to deal with. So it took so much from me especially the fact that we all worked on it with so much love and being proud to represent black artists.”
Oteto concluded by alleging that all of her lawyers’ communications had been ignored by the artist – real name Donald Glover‘s – team.
NME has reached out to Gambino’s representatives for comment.
Meanwhile, Gambino appeared to have been teasing something on a mysterious Instagram account earlier this month.
Yesterday (December 10), on the anniversary of Childish Gambino’s 2013 sophomore full-length, ‘Because The Internet’, an Instagram account supposedly credited to the rapper started an impromptu Instagram Live stream.
The brief, 30-second broadcast reportedly only featured audio without footage. It began with a voice saying, “Can you hear me”, followed by an ominous soundscape and the voice becoming increasingly distorted. Cheering can be heard in the background. A clip of the livestream was recorded and shared on social media by fans.