“Now I spend my time trying to alter the Barbie image by making Barbie into a warrior, a social deviant, fattening her, giving her more muscle,” she says. “Sometimes I try to make her more like the actual people in my life because I am so sick of the blond princess image and the glamour queen doll I grew up with.”
– Debbie Fimrite, 50, a Berkeley doll collector and artist who is participating in this year’s “Altered Barbie” exhibit at Art 94214 Gallert in San Francisco. From The Sixth Annual Altered Barbie Art Show by Chris Cadelago in the San Francisco Chronicle
I’ve heard a lot about Barbie in the last few years. And not even from the little girls in my lives who aren’t old enough yet to catch the whiff of the plastic icon. I’ve heard about her from the women of Hijas Americanas, from my girlfriends, from women who attend my workshops and speaking engagements. And let me just say that no one is a Barbie fan. This is not a woman who could win a contest based on the votes of adult women- or, at least, the adult women that I’ve met. Because clearly someone’s buying Barbie for her daughters or granddaughters. Barbie is able to still exist because somebody’s drinking her Malibu-scented Kool-Aid. The Barbie commodity reminds me that we all have a vote when it comes to trying to control what offends our sensiblities. We don’t have to buy things– even the things that are on somebody’s wishlist. It might be hard not to please, but sometimes we do someone we love the most good when we refuse to be pleasing just because we want to be liked.
The Altered Barbie show sounds like a hoot. In you are in San Fran, you should consider going. If you aren’t, read the article, it’s quite interesting.