Media: Obama Goes Queer In London's Chroma Journal #9, UK

Obama in Cnversation with Vishnu and Daleks 08

Purchase a copy of Issue 9 online or at the following bookshops:

  • In Paris (@Librairie Les Mots la Bouche)
  • In London (@Gay's the Word)
  • In San Francisco (@City Lights Bookshop)

I have a painting in the current issue of Chroma Journal in London, themed "Americas". It's my acrylic and stencil/spray on canvas painting Obama in Conversation with Vishnu and Daleks (above). Chroma is funded by Arts Council England and it's literary pieces get positively reviewed in The Times.

My painting is about many things, not least the way that Obama emerged from the Internet, as if he and everything we name must be reborn through the Internet to have legitimacy to our ideas of 'what's real'. That said, I unnapologetically support Mr Obama's agenda, but agree that the changes we need cannot be achieved by one person. Hidden in the painting is a lot of code which isn't clear in a reproduction. So who is Vishnu and who are the Daleks? Who will influence Obama the most and change our world without asking us? And in a world of information operations and communications warefare, are the Daleks the good guys? A painting about secret agents, and agents of change. Or read about the contents and order Issue 9 at:   Thanks to ACE and Editor Shaun Levin and his team for publishing this piece.

Chroma 2009

The quote below is from The Society of the Spectacle (1967) by Guy-Ernest Debord, Chapter 3 "Unity and Division Within Appearance". It is particularly apt to the Obama era and precient, I think, in ways we should be immuned to but sadly aren't.



"The agent of the spectacle placed on stage as a star is the opposite of the individual, the enemy of the individual in himself as well as in others. Passing into the spectacle as a model for identification. the agent renounces all autonomous qualities in order to identify himself with the general law of obedience to the course of things. The consumption celebrity superficially represents different types of personality and shows each of these types having equal access to the totality of consumption and finding similar happiness there. The decision celebrity must possess a complete stock of accepted human qualities. Official differences between stars are wiped out by the official similarity which is the presupposition of their excellence in everything. Khrushchev became a general so as to make decisions on the battle of Kursk, not on the spot, but at the twentieth anniversary, when he was master of the State. Kennedy remained an orator even to the point of proclaiming the eulogy over his own tomb, since Theodore Sorenson continued to edit speeches for the successor in the style which had characterized the personality of the deceased. The admirable people in whom the system personifies itself are well known for not being what they are; they became great men by stooping below the reality of the smallest individual life, and everyone knows it."


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