Food Chain Barbie
Region: North America
Subject: Political/Economic/Social Opinion
Artist: Tom Forsythe
Confronting Bodies: Mattel
Dates of Action: 2000-2001
Location: Los Angeles, CA, USA
Description of Artwork: Forsythe photographs Barbies in various poses in order to critique the materialistic and gender-oppressive values he believes the doll embodies. His images, including Barbies doing household chores, Barbies wrapped in tortillas, Barbie heads impaled on fondue skewers, Barbies being dismembered in a blender, and Barbies having sex, have appeared in galleries throughout the country.
The Incident: Mattel sued Forsythe alleging a variety of claims including trademark and copyright infringement. Mattel sought a preliminary injunction against Forsythe. A Federal District Court denied the motion. Mattel appealed.
Results of Incident: Mattel's appeal was rejected and Forsythe is allowed to exhibit his work. Mattel continues to seek to censor Forsythe's artistic expression under the intellectual property laws.
Source: ACLU News Website. Additional Sources: ArtScope News Website; Nashville Public Radio - Public Arts Website; Sydney Morning Herald Website. (These sources also mention other Barbie-related censorship cases.)