Lupita Nyong’o made a major statement on the Tony Awards 2023 red carpet, clad in an ultra-realistic silver breastplate moulded from her own naked body.
The Oscar winner described wearing the custom Misha Japanwala design as “a shameless out-of-body experience” on Instagram, adding that she was “honoured, humbled, strengthened and energised” to wear the one-of-a-kind creation on the Tonys carpet in New York on Sunday, local time.
“Misha Japanwala is a Pakistani artist and fashion designer, whose work is rooted in the rejection and deconstruction of external shame attached to one’s body. In her artistic process, she creates a realistic and true record of a person’s body as an act of resistance and celebration, and an insistence on being allowed to exist freely in our bodies,” Nyong’o, 40, wrote.
Japanwala has crafted similar breastplates for Cardi B, Julia Fox and Halsey, and her exhibition “Beghairati Ki Nishaani: Traces of Shamelessness” — which Nyong’o shouted out in her caption — is on view at Hannah Traore Gallery in New York City until July 30.
Styled by Michaela Erlanger, the Black Panther beauty wore the nipple-freeing (but not) number with a black velvet blazer, flared trousers, De Beers diamonds and a Bella Rosa Collection clutch; her freshly shaved head was adorned with an eye-catching henna tattoo by artist Sabeen.
Fellow actress Janelle Monáe — who’s never been afraid to bare it all herself — praised Nyong’o’s look as “phenomenal” in the comments section, while Naomi Campbell deemed it “DIVINE.”
But not everyone was on board with the boob-centric style.
“Not a classy look at all very distasteful,” one critic commented. “No one could wear this in public … so who is going to buy this?” another asked.
Several astute followers pointed out that art is meant to provoke, with one applauding the “poignant message” of Japanwala’s bespoke breastplate.
“Art isn’t going to please nor be understood by everyone,” they added.
But perhaps another fan put it best, writing, “news flash everyone: women can wear what we want and we don’t care what you think.”
This story originally appeared on New York Post and was reproduced with permission