The doll should have to match what the artist really was, says lawyer for late Mexican artists great niece
The toymaker Mattel is in a dispute with a distant relative of the late Mexican artist Frida Kahlo over rights to a Frida Barbie doll released as part of the company’s Inspiring Women series.
Kahlo’s great-niece Mara de Anda Romeo said Mattel doesn’t have the rights to use Kahlo’s image.
Pablo Sangri, a lawyer for de Anda Romeo, said his client doesn’t seek money, but wants Mattel to talk about redesigning the doll.
“We will talk to them about regularising this situation, and by regularising I mean talking about the appearance of the doll, its characteristics, the history the doll should have to match what the artist really was,” Sangri said.
Critics say that the doll is more Barbie-like than Frida-like: that it doesn’t reflect Kahlo’s heavy, nearly conjoined eyebrows, and they say its costume doesn’t accurately portray the elaborate Tehuana-style dresses the artist wore.
Barbie is an American icon that has often been criticised as promoting an unrealistic body image and consumerist lifestyle. Kahlo was a life-long communist who died in 1954 before the doll was introduced.
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