I was thinking about Memorial Day and Jasper Johns popped into my head and his flag paintings.
Jasper Johns served in the Korean War and was stationed in Japan. He received the Medal Of Freedom from President Obama. Johns is really interesting on so many levels. He's an artist and a gay man, who had a long term relationship with Robert Rauschenberg, another famous abstract expressionist. With all the furor about DADT. (thank God that's over) I wonder about his military service? Being gay and being in the military in the 1950's seems like a pretty scary proposition. I am guessing that he didn't tell.
Johns flag paintings were inspired by a dream. I also have made work based on my dreams.
I write them all down in a journal. I wonder if he does that?
|White Flag, 1955|
Whatever his reason was, I like his work (in art school you aren't allowed to say that without giving a reason why, so here goes) I think it's both evocative and provocative. It's didactic.
Flags are everywhere, they are used in public spaces and privately.
I think this is the saddest use of a flag. At a funeral of a soldier.
Memorial Day, used to be called Decoration Day and started after the Civil War.
Here's a cool version of "Find The Cost Of Freedom" with Crosby, Nash and Dave Gilmour.
I'd like to thank my friend Seanie and a shout out to Sarge and all the soldiers who serve.
Have a peaceful Memorial Day.