Robin Gerber presents a a history of the famous doll, Barbie, in Barbie Forever: Her Inspiration, History, and Legacy later this month. The book debuts on September 24th, but I had a chance to check out this collected work a bit early. Gerber examines how Barbie came to be and how she still continues to influence the world through all new interviews, original sketches, vintage photos, advertisements, and more.
Since 1959, Barbie has been breaking boundaries and highlighting major moments in art, fashion, and culture. For sixty years she’s been an interpreter of taste and style in every specific time period and she has lived through and showcased female empowerment as the world has evolved with her. With her more than 200 careers, her plethora of fashion choices representing so much of what has gone on through the course of her life, and the worldwide recognition of her identity has led her to be a worldwide icon that still continues to spark imaginations and conversations. Gerber has taken all of these elements of Barbie and showcases them in this beautifully constructed work.
The images throughout of variations of Barbie emphasize the changes that have helped the brand and their figurehead character to remain relevant throughout her sixty years. Ibtihaj Muhammad, Olympic fencer, provides a heartfelt opening to the work and highlights how instrumental Barbie can be in the lives of everyone. Gerber has previously done work connected to Barbie, but this book allows tremendous knowledge to shine through. The bibliography included also allows you to do your own research, should you want to do an even deeper dive into Barbie’s world. If you’ve ever had, been interested in, or just experienced life in the world of Barbie(which really you know everyone is living in the world of this well known figure) Barbie Forever is a book that will give you tremendous insight into how one doll and one company could take the world by force. This is a great coffee table read and would be perfect in anyone’s home. You can pre-order your copy of Barbie Forever today!