What a pairing! The Dutch fashion photography team and super star musician Lady Gaga. Over the past couple of years they collaborated on Magazine cover, photo shoots and even the Music Video for the lead single Applause of her fourth studio album ‘ARTPOP’. It is this epic music video in particular that I would like to focus on this time.
They really pulled out all the stops with this music videos, with countless artistic and pop cultural references and at least nine different looks. This in particular is what the music video so interesting and also perfectly embodies the album’s theme of fusing Art and Pop; saying that they can belong together. In this blog post, I will try to analyze the video and also look at some of the references.
As there are so many different looks and snappy edits in this video, it is hard to know where to begin. I guess the place to start would be the costumes which are the main part of this video. It is them that give all the references and give it the most personality. The backdrop is relatively plain and stage-like, which lets the costumes and outfits really speak for themselves. In this post I will only asses two or three in detail, but if this post is popular, I might make a second part.
The first look that really stands out for me and has been really big in the ARTPOP era is the Venus Seashell Girl look. It is very definitely a reference to Sandro Botticelli’s Birth of Venus. The hair is very similar and the seashell bikini is a very clear of the seashell that the Goddess is born out of.
What I love most about this look, is that it is so simplistic, yet so easily recognisable. It is also really easy to make the connection between the Botticelli and the Gaga version.
The next look which I find really interesting is the one where she is in a hat. I remember reading somewhere that it was inspired to Duchamp’s fountain as the hat is signed on the side. However, I also think that when she rises out of the hat to reveal the sparkling tail and trouser piece (designed by her sister and her) it is quite reminiscent of Unicorn which kept appearing during her Born This Way era. especially as it is hidden at first and is then revealed in all its glory.
Another thing I really like about this video is that it is so beautifully filmed and that the costumes and outfits all have so much time and thought put into them. The editing is also amazing with really quick edits to build excitement when the song reaches its climax.
What did you think of Applause? Was it one of her better videos? Tell me in the comments below.