American pop star Lady Gaga holds a press conference at the Grand Intercontinental Hotel, southern Seoul, Wednesday.
By Cathy Rose A. Garcia
Pop star Lady Gaga lived up to her reputation as a fearless fashion icon when she wore a black see-through catsuit with an exaggerated clown collar to a press conference in Seoul, Wednesday.
"Gaga style does not equal kooky. I have a natural inclination for haute couture and avant-garde fashion. To me, this is not shocking,'' Lady Gaga said, referring to the skintight outfit by Tokyo-based designer Dress Camp. ``It's vogue and beautiful.''
Lady Gaga was in Seoul for a three-day promotional trip, which included a showcase at Club Answer, Cheongdam-dong Wednesday evening.
The petite blonde singer has topped the charts with catchy dance songs like ``Just Dance,'' ``Poker Face,'' and ``Eh Eh (Nothing Else I Can Say).'' However, it was her eclectic style that elicited more questions during the press conference than her music.
"It's exciting for me (to be considered a fashion icon). A year and a half ago, when I first came out, people said I looked funny. … It's great that now it's so mainstream,'' Lady Gaga said.
Born Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta, Lady Gaga grew up in Manhattan and studied at a private Catholic school where she has said she was an ``outcast.''
Now that she's a star, Lady Gaga still feels like a ``outcast.''
"In some ways I'm still a pop cultural misfit. I don't think I've changed. I'm still myself,'' she laughed.
Beneath the outrageous outfits, it was obvious that Lady Gaga takes her music, fashion and performances very seriously.
"You can say the philosophy of Gaga is fashion-music-technology-performance art. It's an interactive experience for the audience," she said. "I design everything together and New York is the nexus of my inspiration. I was born and raised in New York City. I am inspired by street fashion and the attitude. Andy Warhol is a huge inspiration of mine and I have a lot of Pop Art elements in the show. I am so passionate about my music."
Lady Gaga is planning to release a new version of her debut album, tentatively titled ``The Fame Monster,'' later this year. ``I'm obsessed with 1950s science fiction monster movies. The inspiration from the album comes from the sort of dark infatuation with monsters and apocalypse and darkness and theater. So you will see in this album, a more scary Lady Gaga, if I wasn't already freaking you out enough,'' she said, wryly.
Lady Gaga is currently planning a fall tour with hip-hop star Kanye West in the U.S., but Korean fans just might have a chance to see her againthis summer.
"Nothing's been decided on a international tour with Kanye, but I'm tentatively coming to Korea this summer on my own for some summer festival,'' she said.
During the press conference, Lady Gaga, who loves collecting wigs, was given a traditional Korean wig.
She also revealed that one of her best friends while growing up in New York was a Korean adoptee.
"We used to go out for Korean food together. She's never been here before so I sent her photos and told her about what I've seen here. It's personally very exciting for me,'' she said.