The Evolution Of Lady Gaga In One Fabulous, Ooh-La-La GIF

Illustrated by Helen Green.
It's hard to choose a favorite Lady Gaga. There's Gaga with her Little Monsters, Gaga in her meat dress, Gaga coming out of an egg. And, of course, there's Stefani Germanotta, the talented woman underneath all the outrageous costumes who sits at her piano and writes chart-topping hit tunes.

We'll see Gaga's latest character next week, when American Horror Story: Hotel debuts. The singer-songwriter plays The Countess, the owner of the Hotel Cortez whose purpose in life seems to be committing murder and having sex. Naturally, she has a rather distinctive look.

In anticipation of Gaga's debut as a prime-time player, we commissioned artist Helen Green to illustrate 14 iconic Gaga looks. They're all here in the following slideshow, first individually, then combined into one ooh-la-la GIF. Enjoy!
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Illustrated by Helen Green.
Lollapalooza, 2007
Before she birthed her Little Monsters, Gaga was simply Stefani Germanotta, an overachieving music geek with a flair for drama. By 13, she was writing songs. She was admitted early to New York University's Tisch School of Arts (one of just 20 applicants to receive the honor). After leaving college to pursue music, she performed on the side and penned tunes for the likes of Britney Spears and The Pussycat Dolls. She played Lollapalooza in 2007, alongside DJ Lady Starlight, on a side stage. One year later, of course, everything changed.
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Illustrated by Helen Green.
On TRL, 2008
In August of that year, Lady Gaga made her first appearance on TRL, rocking a hooded red unitard and black, peep-toe pumps — fairly neutral by Gaga standards. “I made the hood,” she said at the time. “And I put all the chains and stuff on it. Well, I’m not wearing very much.” She also gave shout-outs to Amy Winehouse and the Jonas Brothers. Of the latter, she said, “They are so sexy. And so famous.”
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Illustrated by Helen Green.
The Fame Gaga, Part 2 (2009)
In the middle of her Fame glory, Gaga finally let her true freak flag fly. She showed up on a German television show wearing a coat from Jean-Charles de Castelbajac made entirely of Kermit the Frog puppets. The world took note. "I dress this way all the time because it inspires my life," she said. "I dress this way because my whole life is art and my whole life is performance."
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Illustrated by Helen Green.
The VMAs, 2009
After showing up to the VMAs in a feathered neck brace and delivering a chilling performance of "Paparazzi," in which she simulated hanging herself, Gaga accepted her Best New Artist award in a long-sleeved, red lace Alexander McQueen dress that covered her face, topped off with a tall, spiky crown. It was a far cry from her usual mini-dress and heels — and her Little Monsters loved it.
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Illustrated by Helen Green.
"Paparazzi" Video, 2009
The video for "Paparazzi" dropped June 4, 2009, launching a cartoon Gaga caricature with cherubic, painted-on lips — not to mention a million Halloween costume ideas.
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Illustrated by Helen Green.
The Grammys, 2010
Gaga wore three fantastical Armani Privé outfits at the 2010 Grammys, the most notable of which was her first look of the evening: yellow hair, spherical, see-through gown, and vertiginous, heel-less shoes.
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Illustrated by Helen Green.
The VMAs, 2010
Gaga arrived wearing a dress made entirely of raw meat. (It was later turned into a jerky dress.) PETA was upset, but Gaga later said the dress was a statement against “don’t ask, don’t tell.” She explained to Ellen DeGeneres, “If we don’t stand up for what we believe in, if we don’t fight for our rights, pretty soon we’re going to have as much rights as the meat on our bones.”
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Illustrated by Helen Green.
Pretty Much Everywhere, 2010
During this era, Lady Gaga was photographed all over the place in some kind of barely-there top, teeny-tiny panties, fishnets, and Alexander McQueen armadillo heels. The look was reminiscent of early, 2007 Gaga, only with fancier couture footwear.
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Illustrated by Helen Green.
The Grammys, 2011
Going along with the "Mother Monster" theme of her single "Born This Way," Gaga burst out of an egg onstage at the Grammys, rocking a nude, semi-sheer outfit that was reminiscent of a giant condom.
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Illustrated by Helen Green.
The VMAs, 2011
The Lady disappeared for the night at the 2011 VMAs, replaced by alter ego Jo Calderone. Never once breaking character the entire night, Jo gave a monologue as a forsaken lover of Gaga and performed "You and I" before almost making out with Britney Spears.
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Illustrated by Helen Green.
Out & About, 2013
Oh, you know, just rocking some casual wear while leaving a London hotel. NBD.
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Illustrated by Helen Green.
ArtRave: The Artpop Ball, 2014
During the tour to support her ambitious, polarizing album Artpop, Gaga's costumes included a Harajuku-inspired getup, an alien-winged leotard ensemble, and this polka-dot octopus creation.
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Illustrated by Helen Green.
On Tour With Tony Bennett, 2014
After critics called Artpop a commercial flop (by Lady Gaga standards, anyway), she bounced back, paying respectful homage to Julie Andrews with her "Sound of Music" rendition at the Oscars, and collaborating with Tony Bennett. She dropped her blond hair for curly brown, and surprised the world with a strong album of classic jazz tune covers. The most shocking of all? As New York magazine says, she’s acting totally normal.
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Illustrated by Helen Green.
American Horror Story: Hotel, 2015
Gaga has dabbled in acting before, showing up in Machete Kills and Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, even though she told SiriusXM in 2013, “I’m really a musician,” claiming that she'd only go into acting “when it’s the right director and the right time.” It seems she found both with AHS: Hotel. Who but Gaga could play The Countess, an immortal creature who drinks blood, rocks one metallic glove, and has a killer (ha ha!) fashion sense.
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Illustrated by Helen Green.
And now...her evolution unfolds before your eyes!
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