Madonna slammed critics who commented about her appearance at the Grammy Awards this past weekend, calling their comments ageist and misogynistic.
Madonna introduced the performance of “Unholy” by Kim Petras and Sam Smith, who took home the award for Best Pop Duo/Group — becoming the first transgender and nonbinary winners of the award, respectively — but online, people quickly commented on the singer’s appearance.
In an Instagram post, she addressed those comments, saying first it was an “honor” to introduce the duo. Madonna then took aim at her critics.
“Instead of focusing on what I said in my speech which was about giving thanks for the fearlessness of artists like Sam and Kim- Many people chose to only talk about Close-up photos of me Taken with a long lens camera By a press photographer that Would distort anyone’s face!!” the pop icon wrote. “Once again I am caught in the glare of ageism and misogyny That permeates the world we live in.”
The public perception to Madonna’s Grammys look prompted defense from both fans, commentators and columnists alike, as newspaper outlets asked questions about what some dubbed the singer’s “new face,” with others taking to Twitter to ask, “Is that even her?” Some commentators even accused of her being “unwell.”
Madonna continued her response to her critics on Instagram, writing that we live in a world that “refuses to celebrate women past the age of 45,” but punishes them if they continue to be “strong willed, hard-working and adventurous.”
The singer celebrated her 64th birthday last August.
“I have never apologized for any of the creative choices I have made nor the way that I look or dress and I’m not going to start,” Madonna continued on Instagram.
“I have been degraded by the media since the beginning of my career but I understand that this is all a test and I am happy to do the trailblazing so that all the women behind me can have an easier time in the years to come.”
Madonna then quoted Beyoncé Knowles, writing, “You won’t break my soul” — a lyric from a song of the same name, which won the Grammy for Best Dance Recording. After her wins at this years Grammys, Knowles became the most decorated artist in the awards’ history.
Madonna then ended her Instagram post by writing, “I look forward to many more years of subversive behavior -pushing boundaries-Standing up to the patriarchy -and Most of all enjoying my life.”