Barbie Veruschka, the mistress of insanity, lost control over her beloved space hopper and dived off the table's edge. Now, after hospitalization, Valeria takes care of the poor, wounded drama queen.
In the darkness of the light a Broken Barbie weeps: "My flesh was violated and my heart has been damaged. A dark evil harassed me and abused me. My porcelain world was wrecked and began to crack and break. I am crushed by that evil, sucked into the darkness of fear! I am weak - for the hurts have not passed away yet. I am doomed to helplessness and pain." The Creator Shaman was passing by when he heard her weeping and placed his totemic lens on the ground under her eyes blind with tears: "See here, you are broken but not dead! Forget what lies in the past, and reach forward, to what lies ahead. I will boost your weaknesses with my totemic lens - for power is made perfect in weakness. I will glorify your broken soul, and by serving creativity you will channel your tears into the book of powerful beings. Develop your wings and your feathers - one who has wings will fly off to immortality. A strong woman is a woman standing on tiptoe, shrugging her shoulders and lifting her head. My creativity resurrects you, once at every blink - at the speed of my shutter! Despair crushes the soul, but art has the power to heal and the power to remind us that we have one." ~ Shadia Alem
Barbie Veruschka has spotted a new favorite toy. Every day, in the very early morning hours, she saddles up her space hopper and jumps around on every table trying to catch anybody's attention.
To be manufactured allows me to understand what it means to respect a process. Batch no. 8176. If you want to play this game, then you must pay the price of your authenticity. My blueprint demanded time to perfect, like the time it takes to create a nostalgic photographic effect just with the mixing of color and texturing. Not every image enjoys an equal effort and not every doll enjoys the same privilege. Knowing this already made me feel the pressure to succeed. To excel. I am a Barbie doll - built to perfection. Meticulous care applied to my make-up and hair. My dress. Accessories. My end user is a puppeteer. I had to accept the fact that he could dress me and undress me. Move me, play with me in any way he saw fit. There are worse fates, I guess. Some users are very rough on their dolls. "What's their biggest fear?" Ending up in Voodoo land at the mercy of the master, and so my quest was born. As ambassadors of playthings, we must play, but in doing so, highlight our abuses around the world - the suffering to please man's dark pleasures. Now quests aren't quests without friends to share them, so together we charmed our way into the pockets of the picture taker who promised to document our games. We left carrying with us the pin-cushioned souls of the doomed dolls and a message of defiance to the men. I learned that to make the photograph look effortless requires nothing less than the soul I did not possess, and thus was born a new quest - a trip to the birthplace of the wild woman to lose my comfortable mind and so become alive. ~ Barbie Q
I was free on every road as my home. No limitations, no commitments. But summer passed and winter came and I fell short for safety. I fell for its spell, slowly humming me to sleep because I was tired and small, too weak to take or handle those opinions and views, attacking me from every angle. Against my art, against my self, against my very way of living. The camel traders have stopping places along their routes called caravanserai. Sometimes they are hundreds of miles apart, over desert or mountain range, but they travel safely in the knowledge that there will be a place where they can shelter and find succor at the end of their journey. Even if they have never been that way before, they are sure that there will be such a place; that sooner or later, they will find a caravanserai. No one could know what lay beyond today, but you had to hope, and be brave, and trust that all would be well. I collected my thoughts, my few possessions and built fences around my values and character. I protected my definition of beauty and success like a treasure at the bottom of the sea, for no one saw what I saw, or felt the same as I did, and so I wanted to keep to myself. Down in the box I hid to protect myself.
Delighted, honored and proud, TIZIRI, the Berber Barbie, is presenting her very first autograph card. Also, it's the Folies Barbie's first autograph card at all - Barbie art in letter format.
Daguerreotype, but I am no process. I have existed since time was invented and I made my home in the photographic images through which I dwell. I live, timeless and not alone but with the essence of everything that has been captured. Caught with the click. I use the 'punctum' to reveal myself. That 'thing' that moves you, my viewer. That makes you turn back and look again, or that causes you to linger on me in your mind. When you close your eyes and conjure the image, THEN. Beautiful. Unforgettable that moment when I permeate to your soul. Society wants to tame my photographs. Temper the madness, so make it an art conforming me to its particular rules. Tame the wildness. Tame the picture, or free the insanity by making the realism absolute. When the living and terrified consciousness is faced with the timeless photographic ecstasy. Those movements that are caught in the corner of your eye where I stay, locked between your thoughts of self-doubt and disbelief. Once discovered, we become trapped and connected. Me and you, the discoverer. ~ Barbie Q
After unboxing this new big greenish gadget, the insane Barbie dolls first didn't know what it is used for. After studying the Chinese instruction manual, fortunately, underlined with many images, they immediately wanted to put it into action to test the clamping force of the vice. And VERUSCHKA, still the wounded poor with her broken leg on a crutch, was not fast enough to hobble away ...
Photographers bring forward to light, to presence, the unseen by others. Photography is an elegiac art, a twilight art. Most subjects photographed are, just by virtue of being photographed, touched with pathos. An ugly or grotesque subject may be moving because it has been dignified by the attention of the photographer. A beautiful subject can be the object of rueful feelings because it has aged or decayed or no longer exists. The very question of whether photography is, or is not, an art is essentially a misleading one. Although photography generates works that can be called art, it requires subjectivity, it can lie, it gives aesthetic pleasure, Photography is not, to begin with, an art form at all. It is a medium in which works of art, among other things, are made. One would think that a photographer finds the images but the truth is the images should find the photographer. This happens when one is receptive, being alert and curious, keeping an open mind. The photographic skill is reflected in the ability to create an experience of the image and successfully convey it to the viewer in that single frame. To photograph what you know is there, not what you can see.
Although TIZIRI was the last in, she's the first one out with a little autograph card. Fueled and fully empowered by this fact, she's operating the roller trimmer with lightning speed. Snip, snap, snip, snap it goes. She even is allowed to cut down the card of the Folies' injured master bitch VERUSCHKA.
The world is always running away from society and the only way to keep the stuff that has happened in the past is by taking photographs. People say that a time machine can not be invented, but they have already invented a device that can stop time - cameras are the world's first-time machines. We can keep memories of things alive with photographs. We have been able to rescue it on film, and no one can remediate those photographs, we can keep them as long as we want to. It seems positively unnatural to travel for pleasure without taking a camera along. Photographs will offer indisputable evidence that the trip was made, that fun was had. A way of certifying experience, taking photographs is also a way of refusing it - by limiting experience to a search for the photogenic, by converting experience into an image, into a souvenir. The camera makes everyone a tourist in other people's reality, and eventually in one's own. Needing to have reality confirmed and experience enhanced by photographs is an aesthetic consumerism to which everyone is now addicted.
Choco Barbie ASHANTI features Afropop table dancing on a tripod's ball head, operated by VALERIA. To show how Miriam Makeba 'leveled the bubble'. Bitchy VERUSCHKA thought that she shouldn't be the only wounded one in the Barbie gang and knocked her off to introduce her to 'stage diving'.
The camera can be lenient; it is also expert at being cruel, but its cruelty only produces another kind of beauty, according to the surrealist preferences which rule photographic taste. Surrealism lies at the heart of the photographic enterprise; in the very creation of a reality in the second degree, narrower but more dramatic than the one perceived by natural vision. Photographs are perhaps the most mysterious of all objects that make up and thicken, the environment we recognize as modern. Photographs really are experience captured, and the camera is the ideal arm of the consciousness in its acquisitive mood. The ultimate wisdom of the photographic image is to say: there is the surface, and now think - or rather feel, intuit - what is beyond it, what the reality must be like if it looks that way. To photograph is to appropriate the thing photographed. It means putting oneself into a certain relation to the world that feels like knowledge - and, therefore, like power. Through photography and image, I have been afforded the privilege of sharing the stories and myths of life with others. The process for me became self-revelatory. It was a process of soul-making, something all humans are engaged in, no matter their endeavor - I see a part of myself in each subject I photograph.
The 'Barbie Switch' controls the numerous stage lights for the 'Folies Barbie'. Barbies, the greatest postures under the sun, never can't get enough of lamps and light gadgets. 'Master-Slave' ASHANTI hauled it onto the stage. VERUSCHKA, the wounded poor, acts as the self-proclaimed 'Stage Coach'.
So Bwana is going on and on about how difficult it is to set the lighting for the show. Some Barbies tried double body shots of Courvoisier, but alas even that could not distract or sway his tedious lamenting. With the rhythmic beating of her head against the box: tap, tap, tap, Ashanti was trying to think. What is Barbie to do? Always willing to give a guy a helping hand, they set into action with the idea of dissembling the switch box and pre-programming the light settings. It was quite a struggle for the little Ashanti who had to drag an additional weight of repercussion for the suggestion that Barbie displays were not enough to distract the master of misery. A cacophony of tiny scraping and grunting sounds made it difficult for Valeria who was attempting to dissipate the tension that was almost palpable in the studio. She got so worked up that she got caught up in the power cord and, not realizing what had happened, Ashanti connected the cable to the wall socket. The Ohm effect of voltage, current and body resistance left the entire apartment block in absolute darkness with a faint smell of burnt plastic. "Right girls", said Valeria "grab the matches. It's candlelight tonight."
Our home has been nothing but a playroom. I have been your doll-wife, just as at home I was papa's doll-child; and here the children have been my dolls. Barbies Veruschka & Valeria are not that happy with their boxed flat. No separate bedrooms, no heated bathroom mirrors, no French balcony, no pink doorbells and, worst of all, poor cellular reception. Girls, blah blah blah, complaining all day long ...
To be a seductress for a photographer. What was the Barbie like before she was photographed? What did she look like, how was she different from other women, how was she similar to other women? Girls & women, muses & models, as well as other females were the sources of creative expression for myriads of photographers and probably also for any other creative person out there since the term art was inaugurated. But keep in mind that therefore creating a work of art takes a lot of understanding of the female being. And a lot of patience too. I've set the scene. I set up the cage. And I waited. Someone wrote about how to do a bird's portrait and that one has to wait and not to get discouraged while waiting. It had to be perfect, comfortable. Girls are so predictable and I got what I was looking for. I caught my birds. "Big Shot, you left us without a Coke in the box! Do you like to photograph us to sleep? Sometimes you don't seem to give us credit for very much intelligence at all - hey, we're magazine readers! There's a need for girls that hide in a 'lil greenish box to stay away from the photographer and we don't want to be framed by one that would make us stay in a house as tiny as a crib! Big Shot, you're a mess. Do you know what they call such people? Peepin' Toms! If you don't stop taking pictures of us we're gonna plug up the lens on your camera with chewin' gum!"