recent news//

Lipstick, Six Packs, Pigs and Plumbers

October 2008


London, Miami and Art in America

December 2007


From Abu Ghraib to Beijing

September 2007


Torture

December 2006


Sending Sexy Back

September 2006


Hide and Leak

April 2006


Who's Your Shepherd?

February 2006


With Intent to Annoy

January 2006


'Tis the Treason

December 2005


Things Fall Apart

November 2005


Executions and Evacuations

September 2005

recent news//

LATEST NEWS AND UPDATES

Rules of Engagement
Marcia E. Vetrocq, Art in America
June/July, 2008


A Call to Arms
Maureen Davidson, Metro Santa Cruz Weekly
October 8, 2008


Buy into It
Michael Leaverton, SF Weekly
May 20, 2008

Kamler also asked South Africa's infamous Clinton Fein to contribute. You remember him: last year, his wall-sized photographs re-creating Abu Ghraib torture scenes reverberated like mortar bombs throughout the 49 Geary art complex. Imagine what he could do with a white dove.


Billboards bring peace message to city streets
Heather Tirado Gilligan, Bay Area Reporter
May 29, 2008


San Francisco billboard display peace messages (video)
Heather Ishimaru, ABC News
May 27, 2008


Wheatpaste for peace: SF Peace Billboards Project launches
Ariel Soto, San Francisco Bay Guardian
May 26, 2008


Night + Day: Calendar Picks
Janine Kahn, SF Weekly
May 26, 2008


READ THE PETER SELZ REVIEW OF CLINTON FEIN'S 'TORTURE' IN THE DECEMBER 2007 ISSUE OF ART IN AMERICA CURRENTLY ON NEWSSTANDS


Bridge: Chicago fair launches first London edition
The Art Newspaper, London
October 12, 2007

Fein Downfall
Artron.net, China
September 2007

Iraq inspires surge of protest art
By Peter Beaumont, The Observer
September 9, 2007

TORTURE: EXHIBITION 2007
BEIJING..LONDON..MIAMI


POINTING FINGERS

Clinton Fein's blog on SFGATE, the San Francisco Chronicle's new experiment with community blogging. An irreverent look at what's happening in the world of pop culture. Check it out...


Listen to Clinton Fein talking to Richard Kamler on his radio show, Art Talk

'NY Times' and the WCHA Dinner
By Clinton Fein, Letters, Editor & Publisher
May 1, 2007

The Horror of Torture, Reinterpreted through Art
By Kenneth Baker, The San Francisco Chronicle
January 20, 2007

Precision Strike
By Michael Leaverton, SF Weekly
January 17, 2007

The Bigger Picture: 'Torture': Photographer restages
infamous images from Abu Ghraib

By Reyhan Harmanci, The San Francisco Chronicle
January 11, 2007

Looking at Torture
By Andrew Sullivan, Time Magazine
January 2, 2007

TIME MAGAZINE: NOTEBOOK, Verbatim

"Who says what's officially annoying? Is that a business we really want our government to be in?" -- Clinton Fein, purveyor of the website Annoy.com, complaining about a bill in Congress that would make it a federal crime to "annoy" someone over the Internet.

Time Magazine, February 26, 2006


Cyberstalking law opens debate on what's annoying


"It's a stupid law that has slipped in under the radar," says Clinton Fein, a San Francisco-based artist who runs annoy.com, a website that he says offers "unique and irreverent" commentary on politics and culture.

Richard Willing, USA Today, February 14, 2006


New cyberstalker law raises criticism


Clinton Fein, who runs the Annoy.com Web site, is also aghast. His site is specifically set up to annoy people through, among other means, anonymous postcards sent through the mail that direct the recipient to read the sender's message at the Annoy.com site. Fein calls the new legislation annoying.

Reid Goldsborough, Philadelphia Inquirer, January 29, 2006


Is it illegal, or just annoying?


The nation's new cyberstalking restrictions started this month. The legislation updates laws designed to protect people from harrassment. The updated law makes it illegal to use the Internet to harrass someone. But a provision of the legislation also adds the word "annoy" to the types of communication that's illegal.

Listen in RealAudio

One of the people who picked up on this new language is the creator of the Web site annoy.com. Clinton Fein calls himself a political artist. He's based in San Francisco. He photoshops irreverant and frequently offensive digital postcards for users to send anonymously to whomever they want--the attorney general of the United States, for example, or perhaps your boss. Fein readily admits to pushing legal boundaries. But he wonders who, under the new law, decides what is legally annoying.

Art Hughes Interview, Future Tense, January 20, 2006


Does New Cyberstalking Law Criminalize Free Expression?


First, we will discover what Section 113 truly means when someone challenges the law. A candidate being mentioned on the Internet is Annoy.com; the site offers a "service by which people send politically incorrect postcards without being required to furnish their identity."

The site owner Clinton Fein has a history of "seeking declaratory and injunctive relief" against the Communications Decency Act of 1996 through which "indecent" computer communication that is intended to "annoy" was criminalized. Fein believes Section 113 "warrant[s] a constitutional challenge."

Wendy McElroy, Fox News, January 17, 2006


PERSPECTIVE: CREATE AN E-ANNOYANCE, GO TO JAIL.


Annoying someone via the Internet is now a federal crime. It's no joke. Last Thursday, President Bush signed into law a prohibition on posting annoying Web messages or sending annoying e-mail messages without disclosing your true identity.

Clinton Fein, a San Francisco resident who runs the Annoy.com site, says a feature permitting visitors to send obnoxious and profane postcards through e-mail could be imperiled.

"Who decides what's annoying? That's the ultimate question," Fein said. He added: "If you send an annoying message via the United States Post Office, do you have to reveal your identity?"

Declan McCullagh, C|Net, January 9, 2006


WITH INTENT TO ANNOY!


Clinton Fein responds to new legislation making it a crime to send anonymous email with an "intent to annoy."

Read more


US criminalises cyber-harassment


Civil liberties groups have vowed to fight the legislation in the courts under the First Amendment, claiming that it would make it impossible for whistleblowers to operate without putting themselves at risk.

Clinton Fein, a South African activist who runs Annoy.com, was scathing about the new law.

"It appears that one is guilty of a crime if one were simply to 'utilise' a telecoms device 'with intent to annoy' a person regardless of the content or even in its absence," he said. "A conduct rather than a content crime; perhaps waving a BlackBerry in someone's face."

Iain Thomson, vnunet.com, January 10, 2006

Photo: Clinton Fein, June 2007


Lipstick, Six Packs, Pigs and Plumbers
October, 2008



At the moment I have three exhibitions running concurrently -- in Oakland and Monterey in California, and Tempe in Arizona. Also worth mentioning is the billboard I created for Peace Billboards: Artists Collaborate with the United Nations -- a project that invited 10 artists from 10 different countries to each create a billboard imagining what peace looked like. The billboards were displayed in various locations in San Francisco for a month.

I was also fortunate enough to receive another amazing review in the June/July 2008 issue of Art in America in an article, Rules of Engagement by Marcia E. Vetrocq. To be compared and contrasted with Goya and Botero was quite astounding to me, not to mention the esteemed photographers and artists mentioned in the same article. "His invocation of old-master painting, far from summoning up Christian martyrdom as do the Abu Ghraib canvases of Fernando Botero, delivers us to the dark threshold of inhumanity conjured by Goya."

Amidst all of that, and as we approach an election that has been laced with racism, violent threats and an expose of America's obese, rotting, ugly, political underbelly, there is no shortage of material for those of us who use politics as artistic subject matter.

Gay marriage in California is proving to be one of the most expensive ballot initiatives ever. As it gets uglier and uglier, a sampling of just the type of people backing this are, can be found by personal attacks on me by the heads of two national organizations based on an admittedly provocative satire I wrote back in 2003, but was only discovered by them this year.

Thanks for your patience with my infrequent updates, and for those of you who are American -- get out and vote.

For now.
Clinton







Exhibition Time



Banned and Recovered: Artists Respond to Censorship


African American Library and Museum at Oakland
Sept. 5 - Dec. 31, 2008

In a first-time collaboration, the African American Museum and Library at Oakland (AAMLO) and the San Francisco Center for the Book (SFCB) are presenting an exhibit, curated by the ubiquitous and unstoppable Hanna Regev, which features work from more than 50 artists working in a variety of media.

Participating artists interpret a censored text of their choice. The project provides a unique forum for visual artists to respond to the suppression of literary art.

An exhibition of art inspired by banned books -- or in my case -- inspired by Pink Floyd's unforgettable film and album, The Wall.

In Oakland, works by the following artists are on display:

Jody Alexander * Michael Bartalos * Milton Bowens * David Broom Victor Cartagena * Mitchell Confer * Luis Delgado * Jordan Essoe Rodney Ewing * Clinton Fein * Liz Hager * Charles Hobson Justin Hoover * Richard Kamler * Lisa Kokin * Naomie Kremer Pat Lenz * Jose Ramon Lerma * Malcolm Lubliner * Kara Maria Mary V. Marsh * Barbara Milman * Douglas Minkler * Eileen Moderbacher Sasha Mosalov * Daniel Newman * Penny Nii * Priscilla Otani Anne Hicks Siberell * Elizabeth Sher * Sandra Ortiz Taylor Bryan Keith Thomas * Kathleen Walkup * Kazuko Watanabe Tanya Wilkinson * Noah Wilson * Jan Wurm



>>Banned & Recovered: Artists Respond to Censorship

The Other Mainstream II: Selections From the Collection of Mikke and Stanley Weithorn


The Arizona State University Art Museum
Sept. 27, 2008 - January 4, 2009

The Arizona State University Art Museum presents The Other Mainstream II: Selections From the Collection of Mikke and Stanley Weithorn, on view through January 4, 2009. The Other Mainstream II is the second exhibition at the ASU Art Museum that focuses on the adventurous contemporary art collection of Valley residents Mikki and Stanley Weithorn.

True to its name, the exhibition reflects the dominance in the contemporary art world of artists from diverse backgrounds working with new issues of identity - a new mainstream. With most of the works in the exhibition created since 9/11, the collection is bold in its commentary on global concerns and in its figurative imagery. The paintings, drawings and sculptures reach beyond simply examining the assigned powers in politics, gender, and race, and move to a broader examination of our humanity through humor or fantasy or blunt honesty.

Artists include: Emma Amos, Sanford Biggers, Iona Rozeal Brown, Gordon Cheung, Einar and Jamex de la Torre, Edward del Rosario, Tjorg Douglas Beer, Tom Duncan, Nekisha Durrett, Edouard Duval-Carrie, Marcel Dzama, Clinton Fein, Luiz Flavio, Chitra Ganesh, Amiee Garcia, Deborah Grant, Elizabeth Huey, John Jodzio, Ai Kijima, Min Kim, Machida Kumi, Marcia Kure, Carter Kustera, Maximillian Lawrence, Dinh Qa, Monika JM Lin, Whitfield Lovell, Paul Marcus, Bradley McCallum, Dominic McGill, Vik Muniz, Brett Murray, Chris Ofili, Lamar Peterson, Moritz Schleime, Claudette Schreuders, Rachell Sumpter, Jacqueline Tarry, Masami Teraoka, Mickalene Thomas, Jamie Vasta, Tran Trong Vu, Roy Wasson Valle, Caleb Weintraub, Amy Wilson, Su-en Wong, Zhang Xiaogang, Steve Yazzie.



>>The Arizona State University Art Museum

NOISE


Anton Gallery, 701 Hawthorne St., Monterey
October 15, 2008 - November 4, 2008

A culture full of noise...political, environmental, social, personal...is the topic of an exhibition curated by Patrick Frank and presented by the Anton Gallery in Monterey, opening October 16 as part of the national Art of Democracy movement (http://artofdemocracy.org/). Eight artists: Jesus Aguilar, Anthony Discenza, Clinton Fein, Richard James, Patrick Jennings, Tony Sheeder, Lisa Solomon, and Heather Wilcoxon work with issues as diverse as the use of torture at Abu Ghraib (Fein), horror of firearms (Solomon), environmental destruction (Wilcoxon), abuses of the internet (Aguilar) and moribund urban design (Jennings). Coming from Sacramento, Sausalito, San Jose. San Franciso and Oakland, the NOISE artists share only a willingness to confront the issues that most concern them.

I come from South Africa. I was aware from the time I came into adulthood of apartheid and its implications...When I left the country, you could be arrested for quoting Nelson Mandela. So the First Amendment is very important to me, that it be real. You have to work to make sure free speech is protected, and the people's right to know...And that led to the Annoy.com lawsuit, Apollo Media vs Reno...I don't think that artists have to do work that deals with issues. I do think that artists can bring issues to the table in a unique and powerful way. (My quote from the program.)

>>NOISE, Anton Gallery

Face It - Torture in the 21st Century


Highways
1651 18th St
Santa Monica
October 19 and October 20, 2008

Created by artist-educator Robert Adanto, this unique evening of theatre, art and discussion will examine the use of torture by the US armed forces and the CIA, and the Bush administration's redefining of torture and cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment. The evening's program begins with a performance of Harold Pinter's 1984 award-winning "One for the Road." Set in a police state, it is a chilling study of power and powerlessness.

The production will feature photographs from "Torture," a recent series by the controversial South African artist-activist Clinton Fein, known for his notable Supreme Court victory against Janet Reno, challenging the constitutionality of the Communications Decency Act in 1997, where Fein's right to disseminate his art was upheld in a landmark victory for First Amendment rights.

Following the performance, Michael Rapkin, an ACLU attorney who has sued both the President and the Secretary of State while representing his client, a suspected enemy combatant held in Guantanamo Bay, will lead a discussion concerning torture in the 21st century and various legal avenues pursued by the Bush administration to justify and maintain its coercive interrogation program, and the response by Congress and the courts.

In addition, noted documentary filmmaker Nonny de la Pena and digital media artist, Peggy Weil, who will share their latest creation, Gone Gitmo, an installation of Guantanamo Prison Prison in the virtual reality environment, Second Life.

>>Face It - Torture in the 21st Century

Peace Billboards: Artists Collaborate with the United Nations


Peace Billboards: Artists Collaborate with the United Nations
May 26, 2008 - Jun 22, 2008

The University of San Francisco (USF), under the direction of Associate Professor of Visual Arts, Richard Kamler, presented Peace Billboards -- a project of Seeing Peace: Artists Collaborate with the United Nations, an innovative public art installation project. Seeing Peace is a visionary international initiative that seeks to bring the imagination of the artist to bear on the most pressing global issue of our time, peace.

Peace Billboards brought the imagination of 10 visual artists, one each from a member state of the United Nations to engage in a dialogue of international peace through the creation of culturally construed images as to what peace looks like on full size outdoor advertising spaces, billboards, in San Francisco. The images of peace created by the participating multinational artists were intended to engage the publics' imagination by being showcased on 10 different highly visible billboards in San Francisco.

The artists are from South Africa (Clinton Fein), Iran (Taraneh Hemami), Burma (Kyi Win), El Salvador (Victor Cartagena) , U.S. (Richard Kamler), Puerto Rico (Rafael Tesseles), Cuba (Tonel), Ukraine (Igor Gustevev), Japan (Betty Nobue Kano) and Uzi Broshi (Israel).

"This public installation of 10 distinct images on different billboards in San Francisco will press members of our community to reflect on peace and challenge their own vision of peace. I am convinced that if we do not have a vision, a complex, multi-national vision, as to what peace looks like, we might never get there," said Richard Kamler.

The project has the potential for a significant impact on our community as it will not be confined to the walls of a museum but will be in public space for any and all to see.

There is a rational explanation as to why I used an image from my Torture series.. Here are some conversations on my billboard taken by members of the public and uploaded to YouTube:

Peacebillboards.org-Clinton Fein Dialog
By thisisthenewmovement

Peacebillboards.org-Clinton Fein Dialog
Artist Clinton Fein's billboard for the Peace Billboards Project
By thisisthenewmovement

Peacebillboards.org-Clinton Fein Dialog
Artist Clinton Fein's billboard for the Peace Billboards Project
By thisisthenewmovement

>>Seeing Peace Billboard Project

Clinton Fein at Southern Oregon University


Controversial Art at SOU
Apri 17, 2008 - May 2008

The Department of Art and Art History at Southern Oregon University (SOU) is presenting an exhibition of the politically controversial work of Clinton Fein in the Thorndike Gallery of the Art Building. His political images have been immersed in controversy and dissent for a number of years. Fein is a native of South Africa who lives in San Francisco. He left South Africa at the height of the harsh climate of apartheid and censorship, hoping to find free expression in the United States.

The exhibition at SOU harshly criticizes the foreign policy of the Bush administration and the war in Iraq. Horrifying high-resolution images of carefully staged photographic reenactments of the torture of prisoners by the American military at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq set the tone for the exhibition. Fein felt that the photographs shown in the press that were taken by American soldiers who participated in the Abu Ghraib abuses veiled the actual horror of the events. He concluded that only sharp, high-resolution images could convey the full impact of the humiliating atrocities and expose the policies of torture that the Bush administration routinely endorsed. The images are horrifying, but Fein would argue, not as horrifying as torturing other human beings or tolerating it as a national policy.

Another image depicts George W. Bush crucified on a cross with the caption "Who would Jesus Torture?" A phallic missile wrapped in an American flag emerges from his loin cloth. Other derisive images portray Dick Cheney and other members of the Bush administration in similarly scathing situations.

In 1997, Fein filed suit against Attorney General Janet Reno to challenge flaws in the application of the First Amendment of the Constitution. He maintained that the First Amendment protected the right of an individual to annoy. Furthermore, he asserted that indecency was one of the most effective tools to counter public apathy. The suit made it to the Supreme Court, and Fein won the case.

The exhibition was organized as a senior capstone project by Phoebe Peterson, a graduating art history student. She noted that Fein's work "deliberately provokes reaction and is meant to make people think about what is really happening in the political world." Peterson added, "[Fein] wants us to be disgusted and horrified, as the current state of American foreign policy should make us feel." She also noted that the exhibition was suitable only for mature audiences with open minds.

The exhibition continues through May 16. Fein has accepted an invitation to present a lecture on his work in early May. The date, place, and time will be announced.

>>Clinton Fein at Southern Oregon University

Most Recent Reviews/Commentary



Rules of Engagement
Marcia E. Vetrocq, Art in America



With photographic truthfulness no longer taken on faith, some photographers are working out a new set of protocols for making pictures that are seriously real

A very different reckoning of photography's role in delivering the truth is offered by Clinton Fein, who repurposed photographic appropriation to make a series of works based on the pictures of prisoner abuse at Abu Ghraib that came to public attention in April 2004. A South African-born, San Francisco-based First Amendment activist, Fein hired models to reenact the notorious compositions (detainees piled in a human pyramid, forced to simulate fellatio, handcuffed to beds and bars in extreme positions), illuminated the tableaux vivants with penumbral and strangely intimate lighting, and displayed the enlarged pictures as high-quality chromogenic prints mounted on panel. (The originals and the reenactments can be compared at www.clintonfein.com.)

Fein's counterfeits are not intended to reprise tired debates about originality and authorship. Unlike Sherrie Levine, who rephotographed Walker Evans's Depression-era images, or Thomas Ruff, whose enlargements of Internet images preserve and accentuate the flaws of screen grabs, Fein seized upon despicable amateur images, which unexpectedly had acquired public notoriety and probative value, and re-presented them in enhanced, painterly terms. His invocation of old-master painting, far from summoning up Christian martyrdom as do the Abu Ghraib canvases of Fernando Botero, delivers us to the dark threshold of inhumanity conjured by Goya.

A free speech watchdog, Fein also observed that when the soldiers' snapshots were picked up on the Web and disseminated by establishment news sources, online and in print, the genitals of the nude prisoners were blurred (as genitals are when the news media reproduce garden-variety pornographic images). That concession to good taste, Fein contends, served to downplay the sexual sadism and degradation inherent in the forms of abuse devised for the occasion, qualities he sought to restore to the situations when he pictured them. He further notes that the original hbu Ghraib pictures were themselves staged, with body pyramids topped off and thumbs-up signs flashed with an awareness of the camera's presence and appetite. Curious about the moral proximity between witnessing and instigating, Fein set out to see if he might understand (he says that he did) something of the "mindset" of the abuser by assuming the role of photographer in the reenactment. In the end, and once again in contrast with Botero's canvases, Fein's photographs are about the torturers--the photographers among them--and not about the victims.

>>Marcia E. Vetrocq, Art in America, June/July 2008

A Call to Arms
Maureen Davidson
Metro Santa Cruz



Another riveting exhibition is shared by San Francisco's Center for the Book and Oakland's African American Library. "Banned and Recovered: Artists Respond to Censorship" focuses on not only the banning of books and digital media but also the climate of surveillance, the self-censorship that occurs in an environment when it's deemed unpatriotic to speak out. Words, by David Broom, incises seven rectangles into a long white surface. Each space is the specific outline of a different open book. Over these, a glass is imprinted with words from or about the missing book. In one, Salman Rushdie writes of The Satanic Verses: "The book that is worth killing people and burning flags for is not the book I wrote."

Pink Floyd's Another Brick in the Wall was banned in South Africa, where the song was a rallying cry against apartheid. A moving DVD by artist Clinton Fein uses his childhood experiences in South Africa to chronicle the impact of that song. Fein passionately challenges First Amendment abuses, even as far as the Supreme Court. Most recently he has been embroiled in controversy surrounding his series of giant, disturbing, aestheticized photographs reproducing the Abu Ghraib atrocities.

Fein is one of eight artists in the upcoming "NOISE" exhibition opening Oct. 16 at Monterey's Anton Gallery. "NOISE" takes on a culture full of political, environmental and social noise that, in the words of curator Patrick Frank, "must be dealt with rather than ignored or tolerated." The works range from video art by Anthony Discenza and Jesus Aguilar looking at the effects of media to the teeming paintings of Heather Wilcoxon, whose ire at the destruction of the environment and the empire-building of the Bush administration bubbles up into paintings that attract with bright whimsy, then pack a monster punch. The NOISE website by Tony Sheeder is one of the artworks; it goes live on opening day, at www.antongallery.com/noise.

...more

Maureen Davidson, Metro Santa Cruz, October 8, 2008



Bay Guardian; Wheatpaste for peace: SF Peace Billboards Project launches

People gather in front of Clinton Fein's Peace Billboard Basic Restraining, 2007



About 100 art lovers gathered at the University of San Francisco (USF) on Memorial Day, May 26, to participate in a bus tour around the city to see 10 billboards by 10 artists from around the world that showcase their visions of what peace looks like, as part of the San Francisco Peace Billboards Project. The tour was headed by USF visual art professor Richard Kamler who first conceived the idea for the billboard project after wondering, in his words, "Why confine these images to the walls of a museum when we can take them to the community and have a significant impact?"

Participants of the Peace Billboards tour gather in front of South African artist Clinton Fein's photograph at Broadway and Montgomery, Ariel Soto, The SF Guardian, 2008



Ariel Soto, The SF Guardian, June 2, 2008



SF Weekly: Night + Day: Calendar Picks

Sure, there's the expected iconography -- an all-seeing eye, white lilies sprouting from a cracked tank -- but peace doesn't look the same to everyone around the world. One billboard depicts a baby in a gun sight beneath a line of dripping blood, with the theme represented by the wee peace symbol forming the bull's-eye of the sight. Kamler also asked South Africa's infamous Clinton Fein to contribute. You remember him: last year, his wall-sized photographs re-creating Abu Ghraib torture scenes reverberated like mortar bombs throughout the 49 Geary art complex. Imagine what he could do with a white dove.

...more



SF Weekly: Night + Day, June 9, 2008



Bay Area Reporter: Billboards bring peace message to city streets


The unfolding rose is a symbol frequently seen in Persian art, Hemami explained. A blood drop transfiguring into a rosebud was also featured prominently in posters throughout Iran in the Iran-Iraq war of the 1980s, a symbol of remembrance for those who died in the conflict, she explained.

Others are striking evocations of familiar images. Clinton Fein, a South African artist, San Francisco resident, and gay man, chose a photo that recreated the horrors of Abu Ghraib at the corner of Montgomery and Broadway. Fein's recent series of photos based on images from Abu Ghraib, called "Torture," was shown nationally and internationally in 2007.

A shirtless man cuffed to a prison bed fills Fein's billboard. A pair of bloody women's underwear covers his head. The concrete walls show the shadow of bars and are cast in red.

"The world we live in is too toxic," Fein said of his decision to show a violent image rather than a vision of peace. "Peace as a concept for me is something that we strive for. Whether or not we'll see it I don't know."

An image between the grit of Fein's work and beauty of Hemami's rose was displayed on a billboard on Duboce and Valencia. Rafael Trelles, a Puerto Rican artist, reproduced an image of a tank broken in half and sprouting a bouquet of flowers next to the words "Imagine Peace."

Heather Tirado Gilligan, Bay Area Reporter, May 29, 2008



ABC News: SF billboards display peace messages


Kamler asked ten artists from ten countries; including himself, what does peace look like? The question grew out of one of his long-held core beliefs.

"The role of art really was powerful to engage and transform society. I really believe that I know it sounds grandiose but I really believe that," said Richard Jamler. Wanda Sabir signed-up for the tour because she wanted to think about peace on this Memorial Day otherwise spent remembering war-dead.

"Yeah to do something different on a day that's so sad," said Sabir.

South African photographer Clinton Fein says he tried to imagine what peace would look like for someone being tortured -- his billboard is a re-enactment from Abu-Graib.

"The bleak conclusion I came to, unless you're dead or unconscious you can't really see peace. Our reality precludes that," said Fein.

Heather Ishimaru, ABC News, May 27, 2008

Pointing Fingers



There's Something About Sarah


In the days leading up to the election, we are not going to learn anything more from Sarah Palin. She will continue to regurgitate talking points that contradict others she has made -- less government, but more oversight, a fresh, energetic start that excludes an old Washington insider like Joe Biden, but not John McCain, Obama's inexperience compared to her ability to see Russia from Alaska -- and it's the best we can expect from her.

Say it ain't so, Sarah! There you go spewing talking points again like a senile Arizonian senator... Now, doggone it, let's answer just one fucking question and tell Americans who and what the hell you are. You mention this imaginary media filter, and I'm glad you did. They are a pathetic bunch. But with your genuine belief in evil witches and the Flintstones, a little clarity from you is not asking too much now, is it? God help us. Our reward for your ascendancy is in hell, right?

My only fear, and this is why Sarah Palin gives me the chills, is that for America, this inadequacy masked as mediocrity may just be good enough.

...more



There's Something About Sarah



Guess Who

Guess which short, mincing, lisping, over-compensating, cross-dressing, hypocritical, adulterating, divorced, pseudo-Catholic, opportunistic, megalomaniacal, self-appointed, money-grubbing, art-destroying, incompetent, ungrateful, inadequate, Mussolini cloned, dispensable, sack of worthless shit added his hyper-inflated, overpriced, over-valued, unsolicited, inconsequential two cents worth into the Presidential race today.

...more



Guess Who: Expanded



John McCain: Packer of Lies


I, for one, am so over having to pay respect to John McCain's supposed hero status. His alleged torture doesn't even ring true with me. Someone who was actually tortured wouldn't have compromised, as he did, in legislation related to America's responsibility to uphold the Geneva Conventions. Someone actually tortured would have stood his ground with an unequivocal condemnation. Not John McCain. And so, like the faux outrage over The New Yorker's Obama cover, depicting him as an unpatriotic, fist-bumping terrorist, there is another supoosedly hallowed topic we daren't discuss. The bullshit McCain keeps reciting about his torture that everyone seems petrified to question.

Is John McCain a demented, forgetful, damaged veteran, unfit to be a Commander in Chief, or a pandering liar, unfit to be a Commander in Chief?

...more



John McCain: Packer of Lies: Expanded



A Heterofascist Gay Agenda

Hate is Enough: Degayifying Gay Marriage


Unless I'm missing something, to borrow a momentary lucid metaphor from John McCain, the No on 8 campaign's "hitting back and hitting hard" is about as strong as "nailing jello to a wall." Whatever happened to the good old stereotype that gays are supposedly artistic and creative? Never mind tampon commercial parodies, these ads are the equivalent of depicting a flaccid penis for a Viagra commercial. That never quite rises to the occasion.

If Prop 8 is defeated, it will be because of people like my dear friend Doug Okun, sending emails to vote no on 8 to his friends and family with a photo of himself with his husband Eric and twin daughters, Sophia and Elizabeth, that communicate more than any of the millions spent on these crappy, closeted advertisements being generated by the No on 8 campaign.



Hate is Enough: Expanded



It takes An Activist (or Three)


It began with a sensational front page story in the San Francisco Chronicle about a new staph infection at which men who have sex with men in San Francisco were at the epicenter. The study, which appeared in the Annals of Internal Medicine, was authored by University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), and its findings were touted in a press release which had the unfortunate effect of turning legitimate scientific data into an exercise in hysteria and homophobia, creating a media firestorm reminiscent of the early days of AIDS, when it was dubbed GRID. (Gay Related Immune Deficiency). Across the globe, stories about gay men being responsible for spreading a new superbug spread like a virus.

At the prodding of activist Michael Petrelis, I demanded a meeting with UCSF, which proved productive, and ended with me relating the details of the meeting before the San Francisco Board of Supervisors at City Hall (Click here and choose item 6 to see video), and UCSF apologizing profusely and publicly.

Moral of the story: Don't spread bullshit under the guise of research or journalism. Or rely on overpaid, bloated national organizations to do for you what you can do more effectively and efficiently yourself.

...more

It Takes an Activist (or Three): Expanded


Genders and Agendas


And then there's a strange domino effect incident that occurred when Matt Barber, a bizarre little man who heads an organization aptly named Concerned Women for America, saw fit to quote me from a satire I wrote in 2003, The Gay Agenda.

Concerned Women for America was one of the first homophobic organizations to latch onto the University of California (UCSF) press release relating to staph infections (MRSA) as evidence of the danger of homosexuality [see It Takes an Activist (or Three) above]

Barber, who clearly doesn't understand satire any more than he does his fascination with homosexuality, had this to say about me: "Such stark examples of homofascist persecution continue to mount. And they're by design. Noted homosexual activist and pornographer Clinton Fein addressed the 'gay' agenda in a 2005 article candidly titled, "The Gay Agenda".

Barber's attack on poor, innocent moi was syndicated, appearing everywhere from CWFA, Renew America, catholic.org, Christian Worldview Network, Free Republic, MichNews etc. Deatils about Barber's attack can be found on my blog Pointing Fingers: A Gay Agenda and Concerned Women.

Another attack came from one of Barber's ilk (those whose every waking moment and recurring wet dream is consumed with the evils of homosexuality), Peter LaBarbera, President of an organization predicated on hate and lies ironically named Americans for Truth, a national organization "devoted exclusively to exposing and countering the homosexual activist agenda." In a sweetly titled article, 'Queer' Quotes: Hating Jesus, and Selfishness Redefined, Peter claims he can "feel my hate," (I wonder where he feels it) and warns he is listening and watching. Among LaBarbera's gems:

"Check out this particularly nasty screed, 'The Gay Agenda,' by pro-homosexuals-in-the-military activist Clinton Fein -- which a friend sent us after seeing it on another wicked 'gay' blog...Though Fein is spoofing conservative Christians (we're feeling your hate, Clinton), I find Points 5 and 11 in his 35-point 'Gay Agenda' the most telling..." and

We'll leave Point 5 to the Lord to deal with, as one day poor Clinton will have to answer to Him, anyway.

And while LaBarbera at least recognized my Gay Agenda was a spoof, he couldn't resist: "we know Fein is not kidding on that one." (See his demented diatribe in its entirety for yourself.)

The Gay Agenda: Exposed