Kansas City fashion designer Peggy Nolands creations arent known for being subtle, as anyone whos ever visited her Crossroads boutique or seen her work on a local runway knows.
By LISA GUTIERREZ
The Kansas City Star
So a dress with Oprahs head Photoshopped onto naked bodies? Were not gobsmacked.
We cant show the NSFW dress here. But Noland recently spoke with New York magazines The Cut blog about the dress, so you can see it and read the entire interview here.
The Cut declared that these dresses, featuring skinny, average, and obese versions of Oprah with KISS makeup and screaming faces might just be her most eye-catching collaboration yet.
Nolands collaborated with designer Sally Thurer. For me, it originated as kind of the age old (red) carpet question: Who are you wearing? And this clearly is: Youre wearing Oprah instead of a designer, Noland told The Cut.
Sally mentioned from the onset of this collaboration that one of Oprahs most effective qualities is that shes a placeholder, shes a stand-in for you with her foibles and her failures especially with her public weight issues.
Im interested and sensitive to this increased access that we have to celebrities and to all of their ups and downs, for better or worse. I feel like its kind of my own personal exploration and exploitation of just that.
The dress quickly caught the attention of other bloggers, and not in a good way. One writer at XOJane.com today took Noland to task for using the likeness of a black woman on the dress.
(Weve reached out to Noland for her take on the criticism.)
I'm not even going to touch on the use-of-likeness laws you're violating because you should already know that as a designer, XOJane blogger Veronica writes.
But if it's the cult of celebrity you were so interested in, there are many other women you could have chosen to make your point. Was naked Hillary Clinton not an option? What about a de-robed Barbara Streisand? How about Photoshopping Meryl Streep's head onto a set of bare breasts ...
Noland herself certainly knows that the dress will be a conversation-starter. And no, she doesnt think that Oprah would place it on her Favorite Things list.
Surely Oprah personally would not be excited about having our version of her nude body splashed on a dress for other people to wear, Noland told The Cut, but I think its an interesting conversation to have about our access and our interest in people that we dont know.