Ai Weiwei’s Study in Perspective series is both an homage, or at least reference, to the Renaissance preoccupation with (and eventual conquering of) perspective, and a conceptually expatriate finger, empowered by a new “global” perspective, aimed at the homogeny. The series was included in Fuck Off, an exhibition whose disappointingly teen angsty name supposes some indiscernible entity, or “man,” felt inwardly, among the disenchanted. That China can’t see the humor in anything is ironic, given their advancing black skies of coal. When viral marketers of his documentary asked fans to submit similar photos and post them on Twitter and Facebook, they non-rebelliously did. What better way to aim one’s displeasure with the patriarchy than to borrow its ultimate phallic symbol, or so a grouch like me would think. Of Danny DeVito, however, whose giddily narcissistic foot photobombs are wondrous and inviting, I imagine him flipping off the world at large five times simultaneously, or just waving hello. One is more apt to listen when the other is not speaking, so squint with your ears.
In observance of the Boston Marathon bombings, which took place one year ago today, I am linking three things I wrote about it, in order of their publication, by which a narrative of subsequent events may be told.