A collaboration between two potentially iconic performers who currently sit on the thrones of their genres, mixed with bad acting, about nine wacky wardrobe pieces, a "pussy wagon," and Tarentino-type cinematography. With that, you will have a nine and a half minute Thelma & Louise themed, fashion blunder that is the video for Lady Gaga's new single "Telephone". (click to watch)
What obviously attracted me to this wanna-be "Thriller" status video, were the over stylized outfits where Gaga manages to go from being practically nude strapped in emergency tape, to fully draped in a flowy white gown. Fashion influences from iconic figures such as Madonna and Betty Page, just to name a few, appear throughout the video. After watching, it was pretty clear to me that GaGa was attempting to revolutionize the market of pop fashion. However, many artists were taking this on a while back, and they did it masterfully. Madonna and Michael Jackson, who have reached icon status and have a wall of fame inductions to prove it, have set trends that no other artist after them can claim. They did and wore things that people never could quite comprehend in their time, and now its all being replicated by this generation of pop stars.
Beyonce in her Betty Page bangs. She also sports them in her "Video Phone" vid.
GaGa chanelling Madonna in her Vogue era in the "Telephone" video.
I mentioned in my last Alexander McQueen post how I felt about avante-garde fashion, how it was beautiful and artistic. Gaga is known for donning outfits that would shy away any McQueen piece, but not in a flattering way and that is my major issue with GaGa. I believe she used fashion as a marketing vehicle more so than as an expression. Granted all artists have a certain image to uphold, and what they wear can make or break them in the biz, but the level at which she takes it makes a mockery of the artistic value of those pieces. And regardless of how many people say she is unique and refreshing, there is nothing that she has done that has surprised me in a positive way.
Lady Gaga in a Jean Paul Gauliter frock from his RTW Fall/Winter 09 collection at the 2009 MTV VMAs. She accessorized with a feathered neck brace and ring from KiKo Jewelry. Phantom of the Opera like mask and hat...not sure of.
If she stripped away all the impractical, what would she be truly known for? Would she be stripping her popularity too? Or would it be easier to actually see the talent that lies beneath all the tacky? GaGa has been declared as the ringleader of "individuality" and uniqueness, but at what point do those traits lose meaning when everyone else is joining? Shaved heads, crazy garbs, etc., have all been done in the past, but now that the Gagas, Rihannas, Ambers, and Cassies becoming the face of those fads, all acclaimed "fashionistas" want to emulate them. They have become followers versus leaders and lose themselves in this circuit of trends. What sets those two groups apart is that special trait of personal style.
The golden rule that all authentic fashionistas should and must abide by:
Don't follow trends, set them.