Archive for category Politics
Because it tis the season, I’ve decided to do Christmas themed art for the news.
Just like Santa, the pre-election Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg promised us all manner of treats if we were good; a vote for free higher education, the scrapping of Trident and… a wooden sword for Timmy (I haven’t refreshed my memory on the Lib Dem policies for a while).
Today, however, he and his party have helped the Conservatives vote to dramatically increase university tuition fees. This has resulted in outraged protests around the UK for several weeks.
Nick Clegg lied to us just like our parents did about Santa.
Santa was a beautiful lie and so was the belief that a vote for the Lib Dems was a direct vote for their policies.
Hence I had no choice but to take this effigy of Santa Claus down to the protests in London today and set fire to it. This clearly demonstrated voter anger over the Liberal Democrat betrayal.
Surprisingly the nearby students were really upset by this. Some of them even screamed but I discovered this was because I had set fire to the Santa right where a man dressed as Santa has been collecting money for charity just seconds before.
However once I explained that the effigy engulfed in roaring flames was not that Santa, or the real Santa, and furthermore that Santa was not real, they continued to be upset and seemingly confused?! And some of these were even mature age students, old enough to be parents (I’m assuming the small children standing there belonged to them) yet they seemed too immature to understand the political comparisons as I shouted ‘Santa is burning to death along with his lies!’.
It made me wonder if these university students understand what they are protesting at all.
To try to help matters I then drew crude images of the Easter Bunny being violated (as a metaphor for the violation of our innocent belief in the fairytale of a mutually beneficial Coalition that prioritises the wishes of the people and not the stronger party’s agenda and also brings you chocolate hopefully).
Unfortunately they wrestled the pornographic rabbit drawings off me and pushed me away before I could explain the analogy.
Now all I can do is hope that these aggressive students get lumps of coal instead of degrees in their graduation stockings! (wait… if Santa was fake why did I continue to get coal every Christmas?)
Prince William is to marry Kate Middleton. For two days the world has been excitedly discussing the ring he chose, upcoming royal memorabilia and whether they will scale down the wedding amidst these harsh economic times.
Firstly I want to point out that with all this talk about austerity and rings and so on, everyone keeps forgetting the simple, happy fairytale that is at the heart of this news.
I am referring, of course, to the joy that must be being felt by every single ‘official royal correspondent’ around England who FINALLY has a reason to be interviewed and asked for opinions again after years of a Royal News drought.
They must be as giddy as a bride on her wedding day as they stand by for interviews 24/7, pretending furiously that
a) They have any actual extra information to impart that normal reporters don’t already have
b) they have an important function in society and shouldn’t be euthanased now while the laws are still wishy washy.
But now, onto the news artwork.
I was disgusted at the angle that the business sector in London immediately took on how much money could be made out of this. A tale of young romance was instantly being assessed purely in pound values.
I even saw a man discussing how his factory had been planning the tacky mugs, plates and spoon memorabilia for this event for the last two years. They were actually tracking the pairing of twin souls simply to plot their profit through cheap trinkets!
What they are ignoring is that this is a beautiful expression of what is unique about Britain. William and Kate’s love is warm, comforting and calm. It is nourishing yet not too flashy. Above all it is thoroughly British and well mannered.
Just like a good cup of tea.
To represent this very British love, I made this tea pot and filled it with warm, loving, English Tea.
As I didn’t want to make it too flashy, I used quite cheap materials. I then realised that the money I saved on these materials meant I could afford to make many copies of it.
I wrote the title of the piece ‘William and Kate’s engagement, 2010’ on the outside of each copy.
As I was transporting them back to my studio via a flea market, I accidentally tripped and they fell, in neat order, onto an empty market stall. Several passers-by immediately offered me money for them as they saw my art as a way to remember this great event.
Of course, that is why I make art, so I was only too happy to sell them, at just twice what they were offering.
I had some more copies made and have already made a small mint. And as the Mint is where coins with the queen’s head on them are produced I guess, in a roundabout way, she would (officially) approve my tribute to her grandson’s important life decision/mass-manufactured, low-quality teapots.
The mid term elections have resulted in a heavy blow to Obama’s Democrats.
The Republicans are now the majority in the House of Representatives which means gridlock on any decisions. Voters angry at lack of progress on the economy have voted to now tie the hands of their President, making any policy change extremely difficult.
Once you understand that politics is a game, it becomes surprisingly simple.
Much like chess, it is merely a matter of guessing what your opponent will do, several moves in advance, and always having a new strategy ready.
To demonstrate this I set up a chessboard. To represent significant players in American politics I made the pieces human sized (I chose to only represent the politicians who are primordial dwarves).
I then let the games begin. Because of the election results, whenever a piece attempted to make a move I had to inform them that the move had been blocked by a new majority from the opposition and they would have to try another move.
Every move was blocked.
After eight hours of not moving the game had become incredibly boring, no progress whatsoever had been made and everyone watching was unemployed.
Eventually it was agreed that if pieces moved more towards the centre these moves would be more acceptable but by then it was time to choose a new leader of the game and I had to go find money to fund my campaign to be the next chess challenger.
I ran on a platform of changing the game to boggle and harsher treatment of benefit cheats.
This morning I arrived at work to find a terrible smell coming from off milk in the work fridge which, as we now know, directly represents the current state of Japanese politics.
I quickly checked the papers and sure enough, the Anonymous Artist had once again impressively predicted important diplomatic rumblings in Eastern Asia.
A giant row has erupted between Russia and Japan after Russian President Medvedev visited a chain of Pacific Islands. The Japanese insist they were stolen by Moscow 70 years ago after, after World War II. Full story here
Since the break up of the Soviet Union no Russian leader has visited the diplomatic-nightmare territory. Until Medvedev now ignored Japan’s pleas to stay away and did just that.
And of course it has erupted in a foul, political mess that will once again cause a stink throughout all of Japanese politics.
This exact series of events was clearly reflected in how we all pleaded with Joel not to open the old milk at the back of the fridge. Everyone knew it was the reason for the odour, even if there wasn’t official agreement on the matter, but Joel insisted on blundering on in regardless and dredging up the past/rotting milk.
This is a fairly straightforward and repetitive analogy from the Anonymous Artist again but they did have to correctly time the milk going off with when they guessed Medvedev would want to make a firm statement on Russia’s position in Asia. And they had to guess that Joel would want to eat Weetabix this morning when he is usually a orange juice and breakfast bar type guy.
So taking all these factors into account, it is good to see the Anonymous Artist once again focusing on Asian economic relations and territorial disputes while still giving us a simpler problem of contained off cow milk rather than soy milk ingrained in the carpet/Japanese parliament.
The UK Government announced the biggest spending cuts in decades today, marking the beginning of the Age of Austerity (two Ages after the Age when Elves first came to the land).
Inspired by the Government’s calls for the nation to start tightening its belt, I have followed this advice with my own art this week.
Hence I have recycled an old and cheap artwork which I have used several times before. I have also made sure it has several interpretations and meaning, giving it optimum value for money.
So to represent the Prime Minister David Cameron and Chancellor George Osborne’s approach to economic management, I lured some pigeons to a pile of vomit on the pavement (I was unable to make myself sick this time but luckily a passing banker coming down from a giant cocaine binge happened to be ill right at my feet).
Just some of the many meanings the viewer gets for free from this bargain artwork are the following:
The pile of VOMIT is able to represent the following…
- The ‘mess’ that the Coalition claims Labour has left our finances in after a 10 year binge, followed by this purge before passing out in a neighbour’s front door and wetting themselves (I assume).
-The familiar/regurgitated ideology of Thatcherism that is evident in many of these cuts, yet these cuts are even harsher and chunkier then Margaret Thatcher’s (who was coincidentally being ‘ill’ in hospital the day the cuts were announced, probably intentionally trying to add to the metaphor).
- Fears of these cutbacks leading to a double dip recession and returning to the poor ecominic situation we have only just begun to emerge from are as unappealing as returning to a meal you already ate and found so distasteful you threw it up on the pavement.
- How attempts to make the Private Sector absorb the half a million newly unemployed Public Sector workers will result in force feeding a full sector until the redundant workers are rejected and regurgitated onto the hard pavement of the welfare system.
-How George Osborne sometimes looks like a pile of vomit.
-The happy, waddling British public who rather than get angry and riot like the French are currently doing are happy to potter about and eat whatever scraps are left for them on the pavement or run in front of people awkwardly rather then just flying to the side, even though it’s CLEAR that you’re walking in a straight line towards them.
-The Blitz spirit. These pigeons/the British public understand that times are tough and so will be happy to make do with rationing/vomit. The pigeons that represent the British public will probably then be actually cooked by a British mother embracing the Blitz spirit and feeding her human children this poor meat/British public metaphor, indicating the class system in all its horror somehow.
- There are widespread accusations that these cuts are going to hit the poorest in society hardest and who is worse off then homeless, unemployed pigeons with little to no chance of getting into a good university?… Otters?
-Also the pigeons are here behaving as vagrants who aren’t being shooed away because drastic cuts to police funding will mean fewer frontline officers to deal with pettier crimes such as vagrancy or eating vomit.
- How Osborne and Cameron sometimes look like waddling pigeons.
So it is my sincere hope that once we become more accustomed to the new austerity measures, we will soon be as content, nay, ecstatic, as pigeons eating from a pile of vomit. God willing.
Ed Miliband has been chosen by the UK Labour Party over his older brother David Miliband to be the party’s new leader. After an embarrassing public rebuke over the Iraq War, David has also now quit frontline politics.
The nation has watched the perceived rivalry between the two men with keen interest.
The competition between these two brothers made me think about the most famous of all sibling rivalry, that of the bible’s Cain and Abel, and how it was an obvious allegory for the tale of the more most famous sibling rivalry, Mufasa and Scar, who I have sculpted here.
If only David Miliband could learn from Mufasa and Scar about not letting competition from your brother make you give up on your dreams.
Did Scar let Mufasa get in the way of his dreams to rule? No, he mobilised and achieved backing from the hyenas (who had quite poor representation in the Disney press) to help him take overand continue the patriarchal, colonial and autocratic system they had going at Pride Rock whilst also bringing some elements of a welfare state back into the mix.
Where is David’s plan? What are his politics concerning the Circle of Life and which animals he should eat versus which he should hire as trusted advisers? Who is Simba? What happened to JTT, the voice of Simba, once his voice broke? Is he in a union?
I don’t know the answer to any of these questions nor how to tell lions apart but I do know that the Labour Party is at a very important crossroads right now and could do with a motivational song from Elton John.
Terry Jones, the pastor of the World Dove Outreach Centre, has attempted to emulate the peaceful nature of their bird namesake by threatening a good ol book burning of copies of the Quran.
It is terrible when a tiny, radical minority claims to represent the more caring and considerate majority from whom they are actually worlds apart .
I am talking of course, about idiots. There are so many idiots in the world who mind their own business or promote love and tolerance but sadly this one idiot has now managed to give ALL idiots a bad name.
When I heard the initial reports of his plans to burn copies of the Quran I thought, ‘Where’s the fire? This is just some stupid man with no followers who clearly doesn’t represent Americans or Christians and has just managed to time his threats poignantly enough to get far too much news coverage. If we pay any attention to him we’re just adding fuel to the fire in debate over the Ground Zero Mosque which frankly is already a hot enough topic’.
When I next heard that there were also plans by some Muslims to counter his Quran burning with their own American flag burning I thought, ‘Enough is enough. They are fanning the flames of misunderstanding and this kind of anger is going to spread like wild fire’.
I then thought, ‘what an articulate inner monologue I’m having today, usually it’s just a string of emotions and images of food I might like to eat that day’.
I soon decided it was time to fight fire with fire. Hence I went around looking for something I could burn to help the situation.
Unfortuantely I fell asleep during the movie Backdraft so my knowledge on the mechanics of fire are limited and hence I am unsure on ways to technically ‘fight fire with fire’. I think it may require summoning Captain Planet but I’m not into witchcraft.
I also didn’t want to inflame the situation myself, or get caught in the line of fire of more angry fundamentalists. ‘Why can’t we all just get on like a house on fire?’ I wondered.
Other thoughts that crossed my mind in this short period included the phrases ‘baptism of fire’, ‘ball of fire’, ‘light a fire under’, ‘miss fire’, ‘no smoke without fire’, out of the frying pan into the fire’, ‘trial by fire’, and how the show Grace Under Fire was really really shit.
So finally, in response to this man’s religious intolerance and the potential for the whole situation to go up in flames, I have made this sculpture of a fireman.
He is a metaphor for the need for someone or something to extinguish a very real and very dangerous threat. I am referring, of course, to my overuse of WORDPLAY concerning fire which has made me so excited there is now a fire in my pants.
NB: The fireman could also be sent to put out all the fires of misunderstanding and hatred and carry the screaming woman known as Social Harmony from the third storey bedroom window of Globalisation. But inappropriate fire puns are the more immediate issue here I believe.
Australia has a government once more and it is a minority Labor government formed after negotiations with one Greens MP and three Independent MPs.
To represent this through art I thought back to one aspect of Prime Minister Gillard that some people tried to make an issue of during the election, that is, her lack of children.
During the campaign Tony Abbott, her election rival, questioned Gillard’s ability to relate to the electorate because she is childless.
NB:: He said this in defence of his advice to his daughters that their viriginity was ‘the most precious gift you can give someone’. Abbott felt he was more able to relate to the electorate on the subject of hymens being the most precious and exciting thing about a prospective girlfriend/wife (above all that baloney like personality and love) because he was both a parent and in possession of a hymen I assume.
Anyway, it’s a very convincing argument from Abbott except for only ONE key point… Julia Gillard IS a mother now. She is the mother of a new parliament and a new era in Australian politics.
And as she tries to negotiate every single bill through a minority government she is going to be the most stressed and depressing mother you ever met. Not to mention the fact that Julia is also a single mum. She has some baby sitters and Treasurers to help out but ultimately the responsibility falls to her.
This is a sculpture of her holding the Parliament, which is her baby now, in her arms.
Meanwhile the weak, upset and confused newborn baby is making her tired. The demands of looking after the baby will make it hard for Julia to work full time at her job (looking after the parliament) and hence this job will inevitably suffer as she tries to juggle her baby/looking after the parliament with work/looking after the parliament.
In the end she may find that despite her desire to ‘have it all’ she will one day have to choose between being a mother to the new government and being a mother to the new government.
I hope she chooses wisely.
Also the new parliament will probably soil itself a lot in the first six months. And I bet old hypocrite Julia will one day advise it to guard its hymen big time!
Further to my news ARTicle earlier today, the news has JUST reported that a ‘psychic salt water crocodile’ has ‘picked’ Julia Gillard to win the election!!
At first I thought this strange, as surely the crocodile would want to pick a fellow crocodile. But then I read that the crocodile had eaten a chicken carcass with a caricature of Prime Minister Julia Gillard on it.
CLEARLY this is the crocodile trying to devour its master’s enemy!
The only other option I can imagine is that Tony Abbott’s plan to not sleep for 36hours until the election has made him confused and tired already and meant he is sending the wrong psychic directions to his crocodile followers.
I have photographed Abbott as he waited for the results of the psychic crocodile’s prediction and you can detect some tiredness around the eyes I think.
Either way this means there is still no definite prediction here as to who will win. They should have got this much better psychic.