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   xoxoxoBruce  Monday Mar 27 12:01 AM

Mar 27th, 2017: Inflammatory Posters

There was a time when printing inflammatory posters would get you ostracized, imprisoned, or burned at the stake. In some
countries it still will. But recently, in more progressive countries, dissidents have discovered an end run by calling it art.

Jenny Holzer’s Inflammatory Essays (1979–82) consist of 24 short texts, each a hundred words long, arranged in twenty
lines. They are printed in Times Roman Bold Italic and each sheet is 17 x 17 inches.
Holzer originally pasted them in the streets of Manhattan, selecting each location according to the nature of each specific
message. Every week she hung new posters, printed in different colors each time, so passer-bys would know they had
been changed.

For the series, Holzer studied the writings of the likes of Lenin, Rosa Luxemburg, Adolf Hitler, Mao Zedong, Karl Marx and
Emma Goldman, but also crackpot writings and religious fanatics. While these references are long gone, this language has
resurfaced broadly in recent years, moving more and more into the political mainstream.
The texts appeared anonymously in public space, their perfect square and colorful paper in combination with the formatted
text made them carefully seductive. Holzer confronts the reader directly with the content, their random appearance gives no
guideline for contextualization, leaving the reader with the responsibility to take a position towards the lines and the furor

The judgement is yours, but you have been exposed to an idea. Can you just dismiss it, like a Bourgeoisie cunt, or rather come to
the light side where drugs, bacon, and sex are free and plentiful ?


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