WARNING! is an exhibition that is scheduled to open the same day as the Republican National Convention in New York City and consists of images, video and photographs of Clinton Fein that capture four years of the Bush Administration. Designed in part as a protest, the exhibit will be accessible, unlike many of the protests that have been met with staunch resistance in Manhattan.
WARNING! features photo-based work reflecting on the last four years of the Bush Administration. Fein is a pioneer in using digital technology as an art form and in using web-based art for social critique. A noted First Amendment advocate, Fein maintains a barage of social commentary through his website, Annoy.com. He employs digital photocollage techniques to construct compelling, critical images. Find out more here: http://www.axisgallery.com/exhibitions/warning/.
The work is designed to communicate how declarations of war, political rhetoric on all sides and a sweeping tide of emotion and patriotism, unchecked and unbalanced, facilitated the most dangerous and damaging erosion of civil liberties in America's short history than anything else ever.
How the threat posed by our willingness to blindly trade our freedom for a heightened perception of security was underestimated and has come to fruition in ways most people still do not understand. How artists are being censored, library books subpoenaed, journalists fired, teachers dismissed, lawyers indicted, families destroyed and students arrested while our airports and transportation systems remain as vulnerable as they ever were.
How a power grab seeped in dishonesty, greed, war-profiteering and arrogance, neatly framed as a commitment to a War on Terror, indefinite, brutal and not winnable, led from the ashes of Ground Zero to the torture chambers of Abu Ghraib, Iraq.
In a world of superficial sound bytes dominated by a generation absorbed with the self and the surface of things, Clinton Fein's work dissects the vicissitudes of our body politic, pricking the raw nerves that the increasingly conservative mass media tiptoes around. Fein's politically charged art offers social critique through compelling, aggressive, and daring images. He subverts existing imagery by digitally altering, manipulating, and collaging fragments to create striking images that shock, mock, and amuse. George W. Bush becomes King Kong atop the World Trade Center, flailing futilely at inbound airplanes. Condoleeza Rice becomes Marie Antoinette, complacent in finery and bewailing the lack of forewarning of imminent turmoil. "The Last Supper" becomes peopled by the President's cabinet and cronies over a slogan proclaiming "Better Be the Last." The overwhelmed face in Edvard Munch's "Scream" becomes Bush's, or perhaps the American Everyman who did not elect him.
These images are not mannered or labored; they shoot fast from the hip and are produced at a prodigious rate, promulgated through Fein's website, Annoy.com, in a one-man parallel of the mass media news cycle. On the website, they are amplified by charged "editorial" commentary, whether in prose, verse, or parodies of popular lyrics. This continual program of publication can be read as constituting a type of performance art that simultaneously performs politics through activism.
< request> Because this show is taking place at such a pivotal time in our history...because T-shirts are a powerful and fun way of spreading a message...because there is a lot at stake in this election...because postcards and prints need to be scattered all over New York City...because viewing this show will definitely shake complacency...because Annoy.com has never in its eight year history done such a thing...because I need the support...please come to the show, please spread the word about the show, and please consider buying a limited edition T-shirt or poster to help defray some of the costs of spreading the word. < /request>
Limited Edition Posters and T-Shirts
To raise funds for the show, there are a number of limited edition T-shirts and posters that can be purchased through Axis Gallery as well as through the Annoy.com Store, which facilitates online transactions.
The Annoy.com Store
This is the blurb on the front page of the new store.
TOP TEN REASONS TO SUPPORT ANNOY.COM's NEW STORE!!!
No other publication had the guts to fight the government twice, and win.
Politically, Annoy.com's editorials call things the way they see it.
Equal opportunity offensiveness
The merchandise is high quality and is not made in sweatshops
According to the government, shopping helps defeat terrorism
We were threatened by The Gap, The New York Times, Ziff Davis and The Church of Scientology and not once have we changed or deleted anything
Our graphic design kicks serious ass
Who said fashion was not a political statement?
In our books, political correctness is an oxymoron adhered to by politically inept morons