When Lady Gaga went dark to recuperate from hip surgery, she went all the way away. But with the countdown clock to the November 11 release of ARTPOP ticking, Gaga has exploded from hiding with the kind of Gagalanche of creativity that we expect from Mother Monster.

It's only Wednesday, and the week already seems like ground zero for the ARTPOP-apalooza we can expect over the next few months. In addition to quashing a budding media-spawned fake feud
 with Katy Perry, Gaga grabbed headlines (and eyeballs) with a stunning series of images form the upcoming issue of V magazine.

Along with an interview by collaborator performance artist Marina Abramović in the issue
, the cover of the magazine contains a striking topless image of Gaga in black rocker wig and sparkly cropped jacket, with one hand cupping her left breast. Inside there's a fully topless photo with Gaga wearing only a white tank top around her midsection and another with a sideboob view.

Earlier in the week, she tweeted about the shoot for the "Applause"
 lyric video, which went down at famed Hollywood gay nightclub Micky's. According to E! Online, after alerting her fans to the shoot, the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards performer got to the club around 11:15 p.m. and stayed for nearly an hour.

Wandering around the bar with a few bodyguards, Gaga filmed the crowd, encouraged them to clap and filmed two fans who showed up with their faces covered in smeared painted similar to the cover of the "Applause" single. "She was so casual," a source said. "She actually seemed like [she] didn't want to take the attention way from the drag queens." Gaga announced on Wednesday morning (August 14) that the lyric vid is due out at 3 p.m. EST today.

On Wednesday, she also posted a GIF of the "Applause" cover, in which her painted face moves slyly between some white sheets while staring out at the viewer.

As if all that wasn't enough, the duet Gaga recorded with Cher, "The Greatest Thing," leaked online on Tuesday. The harp-laden, dance floor-friendly inspirational disco lite tune features the two divas melding their voices for a section in the middle in which they belt the refrain, "I don't know why you hurt inside/Or what was said to make you cry/I hope that you can see that you are the greatest thing to me."

Cher had nothing but nice things to say about Gaga, tweeting, "Just heard 'Applause' it's AMAZING!!!" The legend was not happy, however, about "Greatest Thing" leaking, writing, "Disappointed (I've sat on fkng song 4 over a yr) NOW SOME A--HOLE LEAKS WRONG VERSION! GaGa's SINGLE IS GREAT, & THAT'S ALL THAT MATTERS."