Abigail Adams, Gilbert Stuart
"Martha is my bonnet straight? It's so lovely here at Mt. Vernon. Oh no, who invited Calhoun?"
It's finally here! The day we've all been waiting for. For more bloggyland Inauguration Day fun be sure to head over to Muse Swings. I thought for this special occasion I'd take you on an edifying tour of our local birthplace of Gilbert Stuart, the painter of George Washington's most famous portrait.
What do you mean, Blicky?
Mao. Standing by today with exclusive coverage.
Well, I guess that sounds interesting. OK Blicky, be my guest!
Mao, reports coming in from all over the country today of rolling sounds emanating from the graves of famous racists. I'm standing here over the grave of staunch slavery advocate, and big fat stinkin' racist, John C. Calhoun. One can clearly discern a steady rolling noise punctuated by the occasional creepy thump.
Wait Blicky. I hardly think that's an appropriate topic for today. The politics of the incoming administration have transcended so many issues surrounding race and we should all be inspired by the sense of hope and positive message of.... Is that the gopher from Caddyshack?
Now standing at the grave of Confederate President Jefferson Davis who was one of the biggest, fattest founders of American institutional racism. I am listening to whirling, rolling sound interspersed with ghoulish moans. It gets louder every time I turn up the volume of the inauguration coverage.Mao, some of the loudest moans have been heard from pro-segregation Alabama governor, and big fat stinkin' racist George C. Wallace's grave. The rolling sound is quite fast and quite loud. It almost sounds as though he's spinning like a top down there.
Blicky, are you saying this is actually happening, or are you the only witness?
Mao, no, crowds are starting to form and there's dancing on the graves and some champagne corks flying.
Mao, big fat stinkin' racist, Strom Turmond preserved in a cryogenics state.
That's enough, you've ruined another post! Damn you Blicky Kitty!
Please accept my apologies. Now I won't have time to talk about Gilbert Stuart. I guess I'll just leave you with an image of the very thing Pandora found at the bottom of her box after a host of human maladies were loosed upon the world (big fat stinkin' racists, intolerance, war, corruption, poverty, famine, grief)...HOPE. I just learned that the artist of the image, RISD grad Shepard Fairey also did the ubiquitous Andre the Giant images of the 80's and 90's. Here's a great video about him. I guess all presidential portraits have the same goal, to reach the eyes of many (Gilbert Stuart made over a hundred copies of the famous Athenaeum portrait that appears on the one dollar bill) influence and inspire. I find it interesting that this street artist had an interest in "viral" images before the use of the internet became widespread. This poster offers a wonderful testimony to our national zeitgeist. It is simple, lyrical and profound and it captures this moment in time in every way, from it's aesthetic style to it's savvy, forward-looking use and dissemination.
Here's to hope, gentle readers.