Barbie’s place in adolescence and constructed femininity has baffled psychologists and feminist alike: on one hand, she’s a patient confidante onto which girls might project their hopes and aspirations. But she also espouses limited and damaging views on female roles, bodies, and sexuality. She sends conflicting messages, passively listening to you for hours while remaining inhumanly cold. As girls, we intuitively pick up that Barbie is ... Read More
As children, many of us turn to our toys to navigate our developing identities. Sometimes, our dolls serve as surrogates; we parent them the way we see our children parenting us, and we identify with them. Photography operates similarly: as teens, we might dog-ear or collect magazine images that appeal to our expanding sense of self. Since so many dolls and photographs in mainstream fashion magazines present a grossly limited definition of femininity, it ... Read More
From Scary Movie onwards, Anna Faris has brilliantly subverted female lead movie tropes. In the 2011 The New Yorker piece “Funny Like A Guy,” she express her desire to verge from the Type A, likable and romantic roles offered to so many Hollywood starlets. She craves grit and authenticity: “I’d like to explore Type D, the sloppy ones,” she said.
So it makes sense that Faris’s relationship with Barbie, an ... Read More
BY Katharine Ernst
on Jul 25, 2013
I must say that after I watched the short documentary “Space Barbie,” I felt very conflicted. I'd heard of Valeria Lukyanova before - a Russian woman living in Odessa, Valeria has used plastic surgery and extreme body modification to become what she calls a “refined girl," and what the rest of the world calls a Barbie doll.
Disturbing, no? I don’t think her impossibly unnatural appearance sends a good message to ... Read More
BY Tess Duncan
on Jul 02, 2013
You might remember artist Nickolay Lamm for his work removing doll's makeup to show that they looked just as lovely without that extra layer. Now, as promised, he's created a "normal"-sized Barbie, made to show us more realistic proportions of American women. He transferred CDC (Center for Disease Control & Prevention) measurements of an average 19-year-old woman to make the 3-D model, then used photoshop to liken the doll to a Barbie. "If we criticize skinny ... Read More
Barbie’s iconic pink mansion unfolded in Berlin yesterday, and a local feminist group took a stand against it's arrival. With a rally cry of “Pink Stinks," protesters marched to the dream house– functioning as a half museum, half endless "walk-in closet" - in numbers far exceeding that of regular attendees. Barbie herself was seen pinned to crucifix, and set on fire, burning her into a melting mess. Security guards promptly escorted protesters out of ... Read More
Austin, Texas based “lifestyle” photographer Jaime C. Moore is sick of Barbie. And Disney Princesses too. Now before your feathers get all ruffled, let’s talk about why. As the mother of a 5 year-old daughter and a professional photographer, Jaime wanted to take photos of her daughter in new and creative ways that would not only look great on film, but also get her daughter thinking about the kind of woman she can grow up to be. So she turned to ... Read More
BY Tess Duncan
on Apr 15, 2013
Photoshop is often used to exaggerate and warp women's bodies into looking unnatural and adhering to impossibly high standards of beauty. Artist Nickolay Lamm and collaborating artist Nikolett Mérész decided to use photoshop to do good instead. After seeing the viral photo of Barbie without makeup by Eddi Aguirre, Lamm wanted to create more realistic versions of the more popular dolls. He deemed the Aguirre version too excessive, stating ... Read More
BY Kari Belsheim
on Dec 12, 2012
I don’t know about you, but I grew up positively drowning in Barbies. As I got older, I began to notice that all mine looked the same. (Go figure!) I read articles explaining just how unrealistic Barbie’s proportions are, and had to come to terms with the fact that I would never have perpetually pointed toes, hair that changes color in the pool, or perfectly symmetrical lady parts. We all know the dangers of comparing ourselves to a small, plastic ... Read More
BY Diana Denza
on Aug 13, 2012
Remember when BUST covered the “Fallen Princesses” photo collection? Well, Dina Goldstein, the mastermind behind the depictions of modern day princesses, has just broken into the Barbie Dreamhouse –and is taking no prisoners.
Don’t let the pink walls fool you: there is nothing pretty about the union between Barbie and Ken, especially when loverboy has a penchant for slipping on 6-inch stilettos while dreaming of a rendezvous with a muscular military ... Read More