Jonathan Horowitz: Gavin Brown's Enterprise

By Decter, Joshua | Artforum International, January 2009 | Go to article overview

Jonathan Horowitz: Gavin Brown's Enterprise


Decter, Joshua, Artforum International


On November 4, 2008, Barack Obama won the presidency. That night, an election returns party was held within Jonathan Horowitz's opportunistically timed and oddly entertaining "Obama '08" exhibition, Horowitz irreverently and wittily appropriates items from American lowbrow and middlebrow culture, converting an already-reified pop vernacular into a pastiche of itself, and reveling in the tragicomic dimensions of postmodern life. His practice is cynical, hopeful, soulful, empty, celebratory, critical, complicit, engaged, fatalistic, satirical, stupid, and thoughtful.

"Obama '08" might be understood as an alternative campaign headquarters, a platform offering an acerbic lampooning of the ridiculousness of popular and advertising cultures, the news media, the art world, and mainstream politics. Two elements of the show were viewable from outside, through the gallery's windows: the title phrase OBAMA '08 inscribed on a wall, and a canvas (The Ugly Republican [violet], 2008) that slyly evokes Richard Prince with this joke: JOHN MCCAIN AT A REPUBLICAN PARTY FUNDRAISER: "WHY IS CHELSEA CLINTON SO UGLY? BECAUSE HER FATHER IS JANET RENO." Inside hung an ink-jet-print pseudo-campaign poster featuring a grid of US presidential portraits and, at the bottom, a photo of Obama and the phrase OBAMA '08. Nearby hung a framed sequence of New York Post front pages combining images of Britney Spears gone wild and Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, with headlines such as SUICIDAL BRITNEY AND HILL FIRE: SHE LETS LOOSE BLAZING ATTACK ON BARACK. Horowitz produced two other fake campaign posters (together titled Nightmare on Main Street: Election '08, 2008) that riff off the underlying racial fears surrounding the election: The VOTE MCCAIN one features a hip-hop Britney carried like a child by a dreadlocked Snoop Dogg; the VOTE OBAMA one offers up a pregnant Jamie-Lynn Spears in a parking lot. Nearby, a soda vending machine (Coke and/or Pepsi Machine, 2007) offered us the archetypal consumer-culture menu of non-choice as choice, difference as sameness: Pepsi as the blue candidate, Coke as the red candidate, a reference to the corporatization of politics and the politicization of consumption. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • A full archive of books and articles related to this one
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Jonathan Horowitz: Gavin Brown's Enterprise
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

    Already a member? Log in now.