If you have any doubts about that, take a look at the new exhibit by artists Zoë Buckman and Natalie Frank, who collected quotes showing how nasty — and ignorant — some men in power can be.
The now infamous tape of then-presidential hopeful Trump telling Billy Bush that being a celebrity allowed men like him to “grab” women “by the p**sy” is just one of many, artists Buckman and Frank say. And because hearing politicians making ignorant comments about women is a reality they are so well-acquainted with, they decided to turn it into art.
The duo put together “We Hold These Truths To Be Self-Evident,” a 30-foot-long mural on display at the New York Live Arts with quotes from nearly 40 politicians. These comments have one thing in common: They are all pitiful remarks regarding women.
For months, Buckman told reporters, she and Frank had been talking about the “mass of upsetting statements made about women and women's bodies during the election process.” The project was born out of a desire to demonstrate just how the “negativity, hate, and the abandonment of science” have marked the political discourse.
In Buckman’s last work, “Every Curve,” the artist dissected the nature of female-focused messages in hip-hop, and with her new work with Frank, she hopes to explore the “lack of basic understanding of the female body and reproductive system.”
Taking the title from Elizabeth Cady Stanton’s “Declaration of Sentiments and Resolutions,” the duo used the image of a classical odalisque over the image of an old boys’ club of white men gathered around a conference table. Quotes included in the mural come from politicians, such as Ted Kennedy, former President Clinton, Rick Santorum, Allen West, Mike Huckabee, and Jeb Bush.
Trump and members of his administration, including Vice President Mike Pence — who famously said that women in the military is a “bad idea” — Ben Carson, and Steve Bannon also make a special appearance.
Another shocking quote on the mural, “some girls, they rape so easy,” is attributed to former Wisconsin State Assembly Rep. Roger Rivard.
Hopefully, this art installation will prompt more members of the public to keep an eye on politicians and what they say. Raising awareness about manners, or lack thereof, will ensure that people in power are held accountable for their actions.
Banner and thumbnail credit: Reuters, Mike Segar