The raw meat dress made famous by Lady Gaga at the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards is ready for its public close-up — and you won't need to hold your nose.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland will be showing the item as part of its "Women Who Rock: Vision, Passion, Power" exhibit. Since its first brief appearance, the dress has resided in a meat locker, but naturally needed some modifications for a longer engagement. Taxidermists threw it in a vat of chemicals, dried it out, and then sent it off to the museum. Voila! Preserved for all eternity.

Lady Gaga explained her decision to wear the dress to Ellen DeGeneres last year saying, "Well, it is certainly no disrespect to anyone that is vegan or vegetarian. As you know, I am the most judgment-free human being on the earth. However, it has many interpretations for me this evening. If we don't stand up for what we believe in and if we don't fight for our rights, pretty soon we're going to have as much rights as the meat on our own bones. And, I am not a piece of meat."

The dress, dubbed by Time magazine as "the Best Fashion Statement of 2010," spawned $100,000 knockoffs and some ill-advised Halloween costumes. "If it's fresh meat, you're going to get blood, juice over everything you touch or sit on, so it's not very hygienic," said one NYC butcher. 

The "Women Who Rock" exhibit will run through February 2012. Said The Wall Street Journal in reviewing the display: 

"Occupying two floors and both handsomely mounted and thoroughly entertaining, the [Women Who Rock] exhibition strikes an agreeable tone by balancing a breezy overview featuring sexuality, fashion and a hint of scandal with a respectful nod to the musical, cultural and commercial achievements of the 60 or so women it has selected to commemorate."

To find out more about the exhibit, jump here

Lady Gaga in meat dress

Michael d'Estries ( @michaeldestries ) covers science, technology, art, and the beautiful, unusual corners of our incredible world.

Lady Gaga's meat dress off to Rock Hall of Fame
2010's most famous dress will be displayed to the public until February 2012.