Across from a Pret a Manger near Union Square Park, Nicolette Barischoff held still as an artist painted an open blue eye across her sternum on Sunday. It was around 88 degrees and a crowd had assembled around them. But the temperature and the audience did not faze Ms. Barischoff. Nor did the fact that she was naked.
“It’s a very Zen experience,” she said, as photographers snapped pictures from behind police barricades. “This is my fishing.”
Ms. Barischoff, 38, a writer in Los Angeles, was among the 60 people who had paid $100 to become mostly nude human canvases for 40 artists during NYC Bodypainting Day, a public art exhibition that has been staged annually since 2014. This year’s installment was the 10th — and the last, according to the event’s founder, Andy Golub, an artist. He said he was ending it to focus on other projects for his organization, Human Connection Arts.
Nije Durdeen, 31, came from Philadelphia to model after learning she might not get another chance. “You get to be nude in public and not get arrested,” she said while standing near a table holding bottles of Gatorade in shades almost as vibrant as the turquoise-colored paint covering the right side of her body.
Ms. Durdeen has been a body-paint model for about seven years. Though she has done some gigs at artists’ studios, she said she preferred to be painted in public so she could observe a broader spectrum of reactions. Some passers-by at this year’s Bodypainting Day blushed and sped past as artists decorated people of all shapes and sizes. Others leered or snapped photos.
“Art is supposed to be subjective,” Ms. Durdeen said. “Some people may be offended. Some people, this might be right up their alley.”
The Nixa junior high and high school handbooks have long included detailed dress code rules and the bulk of it remains the same, officials said.
Jared Webster, executive director of secondary education, said the changes were “a response to current trends.”
“What we always say is what is acceptable to wear on a Friday night out is not always acceptable to wear to school,” he said. “Sometimes a specific piece of clothing will become very popular and it’s not appropriate for a school setting and you just have to address that.”
Webster, who was principal of Nixa Junior High until June 30, said sheer clothing was popular nearly a decade ago and prompted tweaks to the rules, which are designed to limit distractions.
“More than anything, it is assuring that we are keeping education the main priority,” he said.
The changes this year including banning lingerie of any kind and body paint and noting that “undergarments” of any kind — the rules used to just read “underwear” — could not be visible.
Webster said the body paint question may have come up in relation to what’s appropriate to wear on game day and to make clear that clothing, not just paint, is required to adequately cover up.
The Met Gala is a huge night for fashion, but why wear a regular old dress or suit when you can walk the red carpet in silver body paint? That’s what Lil Nas X did on May 1. Nearly unrecognizable, the rapper was covered from head to toe in a combination of silver body makeup, glitter, pearls, and rhinestones.
Save for a face piece, tiny bottoms, and platform boots, Nas X hit the steps of the Met Gala 2023 with nothing on, yet he arguably made the biggest statement of all. The face piece completely covered his eyes, brows, and mouth — even his teeth featured a silver grill. Celebrity makeup artist Pat McGrath used Pat McGrath Labs products to create the masterpiece, along with 5,000 crystals. The glam team started work at 8:30 A.M. and finished the creation at 7 P.M.
To stay on theme, Lil Nas X’s extra-long stiletto nails were covered in similar gems by Temeka Jackson using Aprés Nails products. The only thing not covered in silver paint and glitter was his hair by Coree Moreno using Matrix products.
Maybe body paint for clothes is a budding Met Gala trend. Last year at the Met Gala 2022, Cara Delevingne wore gold body paint on the red carpet for her own head-turning look. Ahead, take a closer peek at Lil Nas X’s look for yourself.