Thursday, June 16, 2011

Cutlet Couture: Lady Gaga's Meat Dress Served Up at Rock Hall

You watched in fascinated horror as she strutted down the red carpet wearing it at the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards. You chuckled as commentators and fans debated whether she'd finally gone too far. You thought it was going to be turned into jerky.

Now Lady Gaga’s infamous meat dress has arrived in Cleveland. The dress is on display at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum as part of its Women Who Rock: Vision, Passion, Power exhibit, on display through February 2012.

Created by designers Franc Fernandez and Nichola Formichetti, the hand-sewn dress is made of Argentinean beef. It's in good company, surrounded by artifacts from Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Rihanna and the material girl herself, Madonna.

The dress' journey to the Rock Hall began last year, when Lady Gaga was in town to perform and the museum invited her to visit. She couldn't come, but her father and members of her management team took up the invitation, and conversations began about including Gaga in the exhibit. Also on display are an Armani-designed outfit Gaga wore at the 2010 Grammy awards, childhood photos, sheet music and the singer’s first piano.

No need to fear exposure to rotten meat. A taxidermist in California has preserved the dress with bleach, detergent and a 10 percent formaldehyde solution. (Yum!) It's also been painted to look like it actually did when Lady Gaga wore it to the VMA’s, instead of preserved, dried meat.

“We realized that if we were going to have it, it couldn’t be fresh meat that was rotting,” says Jim Henke, the Rock Hall's chief curator, “because that would put other stuff in the museum in danger.”

Exhibits and humans included.

Photo: Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum/Ivor Karabatkovic

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