Whoopi Goldberg has never been one to chase trends, and in character has worn everything from a nun’s habit to doctor’s scrubs, but in recent years Goldberg has been recharging the battery of fashion by becoming an unexpected style icon.
Dressing down in brands like Vetements and being spotted amongst the throngs of fashion’s elite on the front rows of shows for Hood by Air, Marc Jacobs and Gypsy Sport, she’s ideally situated to offer an authoritative opinion on the looks on parade throughout NYFW. And with her acerbic wit, we couldn’t resist asking her thoughts.
Throughout NYFW, Goldberg will be reviewing a handful of select SS18 shows. Here, she attends a special performance of Spike Jonze’s “Changers” in collaboration with Opening Ceremony. “Changers”, which took place at La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club in the East Village, starred actors Mia Wasikowska and Lakeith Stanfield in a tumultuous love story.
WHOOPI GOLDBERG: I really liked the fact that [the performance] was here at La MaMa. La MaMa is where all the avant-garde theater happened. The Living Theatre was here. When you think about performance art, this is the place you think about in New York. “Changers” was really fun and sweet. I heard a lot of people sniffling. Somebody next to us was really boo-hooing. It’s life, right? It’s life with really good clothes. [laughs] I loved it.
“Changers” took place in lieu of a fashion show. I like when Spike [Jonze] grabs a hold of stuff because he’s done some really wonderful things, particularly with [Opening Ceremony’s Humberto Leon and Carol Lim]. I love him. I love OC, and so I was thrilled because I didn’t know what expect. The clothing looked great. Everything looked great. And it’s like, “Okay, so this will actually move on somebody’s body.” It was really wonderful.
Great dancers can tell every story, because fluidity of motion is everything. When you’re trying to emote, if you’re able to stomp without stomping, twirl without twirling—it’s just beautiful when dancers are dancing. It’s not ballet, it’s movement. It’s beautiful movement and that’s what we got.
It’s important to see the clothing moving on the body because sometimes you put things on and they look great, but you put it on and it’s really not what you thought. It just looks really good in one place, doing nothing. These clothes—you can run in them, you can roll in them, you can boo-hoo in them. You can do everything you need to do in these clothes and they still fit you. I liked that.
The story was about difference. And what is the difference in the person that you care about that you cannot overcome if you actually care? Are there things that you can fight or things that you can let go? I think it was really about trying to come out of your comfort zone. Now whether [Lakeith Stanfield’s character] will actually come out of his comfort zone, no one can say. But that won’t be the reason that [Mia Wasikowska’s character] walks away.
If you can wear that billowy dress, it’s fantastic! [laughs] Now I wanna see somebody a little bigger. Find the dress for the bigger girl and do the same thing and feel as good. Do you know what I mean? That’s one of the wonders of Opening Ceremony. It’s not just pencil thin. You can have a bust and a butt and wear Opening Ceremony clothes. I love that. They’ve been around because people get that they’re for everybody.
This little girl [Mia Wasikowska] was fun to watch. Everybody was kind of wonderful. But that guy who sang [Frankie Valli’s] “It’s just too good to be true,” oh my God. I need to know who that was, because that was spectacular. I mean somebody else needs to find this kid and have him perform at Carnegie Hall or some shit. He’s fantastic! [Ed note: his name is Abraham Boyd]. I loved the clothes, I loved everything!