Friday18 August 2017

Mattel reveals Architect Barbie

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Iconic doll adds architect title to her CV

Barbie is to become an architect, manufacturer Mattel has revealed.

The firm said the latest incarnation of the 52-year-old doll, Architect Barbie, would appear this autumn as part of an ongoing series of career-themed dolls.

The architect edition of the doll includes heavy black-rimmed glasses, a hard hat, a small model of a pink house, a dress with a skyline print and a cylindrical document carrier containing blue prints.

Since her debut in 1959, Barbie has accrued an impressive CV, with over 120 job titles running the gamut from babysitter to astronaut, via ballerina, business executive, surgeon, gymnast, paleontologist, firefighter and teenage fashion model.

In early 2010 Mattel launched a public-voting system to decide Barbie’s next career move as part of the “I can be…” series of special edition dolls, with architect offered as one option.

But in February 2010 the results of the vote saw Barbie shun architecture to become a computer engineer. Speaking last year, a spokeswoman for Mattel said : “When they imagine Mommy going to work, they think she drinks coffee; she wears a dress to work; she is on the phone all day. A professional architect is not in their lexicon.”

However, a campaign by architectural historian Despina Stratigakos, curator of a 2007 exhibition Architect Barbie and a professor at the State University of New York’s architecture school, appears to have been successful enough for Mattel to take notice.

Stratigakos is thought to be among the architects that collaborated with the toy manufacturer to create Architect Barbie.




Readers' comments (19)

  • Munter Roe

    I presume Ken will be in the class two years above her and do all her drawings, details and renders.

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  • Alisa Selezneva

    she will have to be truthfully portrait – dressed in black, bags under eyes from not sleeping properly (stress), pale from sitting all hours in the office, no nice clothes as won’t be able to afford them...though as in any male-dominated environment being a Barbie probably will help her to advance her career no end…

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  • Yes, they do seem to have missed the mark haven't they? Glasses are supposed to be round, and she's supposed to be wearing a black turtleneck. Tsk.

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  • Completely agree with coment above. matel oviously have no idea how architect ladies look.

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  • That outfit should go down well at the job centre

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  • vickyU

    I looove the outfit! haha.
    Yes, because we go to site in a lovely skirts, not to mention we dont use 'tubes' to carry stuff around.
    It's not even stereotipical, what a dissapointment.

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  • good outfit - shoos in particularly - to pop-up on a building site....

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  • Kevin  Palladio

    Is the pink model of a house one of her designs?
    Perhaps architects at F.A.T. all dress like this?

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  • Does she come included with CAD monkey capabilities.... or is that an additional accessory?

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  • What is the image of the Architect?
    Architects for the most part have either been under represented or stereotyped, and our contribution to the evolution of society has faded into obscurity, either we (architects) have become drummers in a massive real estate band, dancers in the developer’s troupe, pavement singers at the buildings dept or a sweatshop of subalterns and the rest is pretty much stereotyped by ourselves. What then is the image of an architect?
    The Barbie ensemble created by Mattel does away with stereotypes, breathing in some fresh air, why is it that we architects always dress is black? We design and paint in colors and visualize in space, often envisioning future cities and trends which are yet to happen but still for all our ingenuity we are stuck in stereotypes how ironic. Secondly the Barbie: doll has become such an Iconic influence I can imagine little misses growing up playing with these toys and imagining a career in architecture, why subjugate their little minds into stereotypes that we cant break? Have we become so clichéd? Or is this a process of being repetitive because we cannot be creative?
    Kudos to efforts of Despina Stratigakos
    I would like to see more colors and options for Barbie’s ensemble as well as accessories and hey where’s Ken?

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