Tuesday, June 9, 2009

She's got the look (of a butterfly?)

"Funny, I haven’t seen any half-woman-half-butterflies flitting around mid-town Manhattan..."

A gift bag from Bella Pilar caught my eye in the Papyrus paper shop in Grand Central Terminal the other day. Against a painted landscape, it featured an attractive woman wearing an evening gown made entirely of blue butterfly wings that sparkled. Because I use the cocoon/chrysalis in my art to allude to the stages of female socialization, I felt vindicated by my choice of symbol. However, the ecofeminist in me was annoyed to see women and nature associated once again.

Wasn’t it just last week that the Metro North train was plastered with posters for She’s Got the Look featuring women made to look like butterflies? Their evening gowns are colour-coordinated with gigantic wings attached to their bodies, making me yearn for the pre-Photoshop era. Funny, I haven’t seen any half-woman-half-butterflies flitting around mid-town Manhattan, where She’s Got the Look, the model competition for women over the age of 35, is set. I must not be looking hard enough for all those pretties undergoing Kafkaesque transfiguration. As much as I appreciate the celebration of beauty in women over 35, I won’t be watching the first episode when it airs Thursday night. I think the 'show me sexy' challenge (their wording; not mine) would be make me exasperated.

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