Thursday, 10 September 2015
Postcard from the Caliphate, 2015. Work in progress.
Postcard from the Caliphate, still in progress having now had its first firing, is based on Mark Gertler's Merry-Go-Round, 1916. It depicts the Caliphate as a hideous seaside funfair. I read an article in the Independent which reported that a British jihadi had written a tourist guide to Islamic State. The top two thirds of the pot are the merry-go-round horses with IS fighters and their assorted backers and collaborators, enablers, and allies. The lower portion of the pot depicts a collection of Islamist apologists, including George Galloway, Anjem Choudary, Julian Asssange, Asim Qureshi, Yvonne Ridley among others. They dance on a beach surrounded by corpses and severed heads. The dancing figures are borrowed from Poussin's 'Bacchanal Before a Statue of Pan,' (National Gallery, London.) The horse-riding IS fighters are largely taken from Rubens' 'Fall of the Damned.' (Drawing in the British Museum, London.)