You should watch this uncut, two-hour Q&A on showstudio.com with Lady Gaga.
At the 21:30 mark, Mario Testino asks: “Your looks are so extreme. Is this a reaction to something? Are you questioning or altering the status quo of women’s style?”
Yes, yes I am. I am a feminist.
I reject wholeheartedly the way we are taught to perceive women â€” the beauty of women, how a woman should act or behave. Women are strong and fragile; women are beautiful and ugly; we are soft spoken and loud â€” all at once. There is something mind-controlling about the way we’re taught to view women, and my work is both visually and musically a rejection of all of those things, but more importantly, a quest. And it’s exciting because all of the avant garde clothing and the lyric and the musical style, which was a certain time at once weird or odd or unattractive, uncomfortable, shocking… it’s now trendy. So perhaps we can make women’s rights trendy; make women’s rights, feminism, strength and security, and the power of the wisdom of the woman, let’s make that trendy.
… Mario always wants me to be naked in our photoshoots. We have a room of couture and I always end up naked.