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Hello, Dali

May 12, 1996|Phyllis Sonoma

The Barbie doll became a willing naked canvas for fashion design students at Otis College of Art and Design this spring. Department chair Rosemary Brantley invited four mentor-critics from Mattel to guide 16 seniors as they created the collection "Barbie Glamwear Inspired by Famous Painters." No store-bought Barbies these--Mattel customized each doll's hair and makeup to match the students' sketches. Under the category "Barbie Fantasy Eveningwear," standouts include the impressionistic "Renoir Barbie," the bursting sunflower "Van Gogh Barbie" and the fin-de-si cle "Toulouse-Lautrec Barbie." At Otis' 14th Annual Critics' Awards Fashion Show at the Beverly Hilton on April 20, a silent auction yielded a highest bid of $1,500 for "Warhol Barbie"--an instance of pop-culture price inflation worthy of Andy himself.

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