Rapper Lil Nas X, also known as Montero Lamar Hill, showed up to the 2021 BET Awards on Sunday wearing a dress that likens the Catholic Church to Nazism.
Hill, who made headlines in March for rolling out a limited edition pair of custom Nike sneakers featuring satanic imagery and a drop of human blood, “first turned heads in a billowing gown that featured a plunging neckline, a corset-like bodice and an over-the-top bottom half,” according to E! Online.
“As for the fabulous creation, it had a unique print that wrapped around the design. To complete his look, the 22-year-old star wore a matching blazer and dainty jewelry pieces,” the outlet continued.
As Popsugar reported, Hill’s “blue-and-white gown — created by Andrea Grossi, a young graduate from Polimoda Fashion Institute in Florence — has a print that you’ve got to zoom in on to get the message, in case the voluminous silhouette didn’t suggest he was making a statement.”
Grossi explained that the dress he designed, which is part of a project called “Welcome to DeusLand,” was intended to liken the Catholic Church to Nazism. “DeusLand” is an apparent play on “Deus,” the Latin word for God, and “Deutschland,” the German name for Germany. As Grossi explained:
Through an artwork I notice and describe the “Occident’s Chaos” with parallelism between Nazism and church, ideologies that have led the populations for a long time in wrong way. What is our ideology today? I tried to combine technology and craftmanship [sic], thanks to the support of leather goods companies located in Tuscany and Umbria, which have put their tradition and quality at my disposal, that [I] have combined with techniques such as laser cutting, embossing, bonding to create modern and innovative manipulation.
Hill’s infernal footwear coincides with the release of the graphic new music video for his new song “Montero (Call Me By Your Name),” which trended at the top of YouTube with more than 25 million views as of Sunday afternoon. Replete with biblical and occult imagery, the video depicts Hill being sexually seduced in the Garden of Eden by Satan in serpentine form, after which the camera cuts to the forbidden Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, made famous for its role in the Book of Genesis and the fall of man.
Etched into the tree’s bark is an ancient Greek quote from Plato’s “Symposium” that translates: “Now when our first form had been cut in two, each half in longing for its fellow would come to it again.” The passage is a reference to ancient pagan views of dualism and sexuality that taught humans were originally male, female, and androgynous, and that homosexuality is an attempt to recover one’s primal nature.
Hill’s sneakers, of which only 666 pairs were made, sold out within seconds. A U.S. District Court approved Nike’s restraining order request against the company that collaborated with him on them, however, effectively blocking the further sale of the hellish shoes.