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University flies blackened American flag for art display

The University of Kansas is hosting a display on campus featuring an American flag that has been smeared with black paint by an artist as a commentary on “the current political climate.”

The artist is being featured at KU as part of an ongoing project sponsored by Creative Time, a New York based organization focused on three core values: “art matters, artists’ voices are important in shaping society, and public spaces are places for creative and free expression.”

[RELATED: Prof uses American flag as doormat in college ‘art display’]

The flag, “untitled (flag 2),” was designed by German artist Josephine Meckseper and is being displayed in several locations across the United States, including KU, Cornell University, Texas State University, Rutgers University, and th University of South Florida. 

Meckseper’s design is the only one in the project that has involved altering the American flag.

“The flag is a collage of an American flag and one of my dripped paintings which resembles the contours of the United States,” Meckseper explained on the Creative Time website. “I divided the shape of the country in two for the flag design to reflect a deeply polarized country in which a president has openly bragged about harassing women and is withdrawing from the Kyoto protocol and UN Human Rights Council.”

“The black and white sock on my flag takes on a new symbolic meaning in light of the recent imprisonment of immigrant children at the border,” Meckseper added.

[RELATED: University art display axes American flag]

The project, which began in June 2017, called “Pledges of Allegiance” features 16 artists and focuses on one artist’s work each month. Each artist designed a flag to highlight “an issue the artist is passionate about, a cause they believe is worth fighting for, and speaks to how we might move forward collectively,” according to the project description. 

“Conceived in response to the current political climate, Pledges of Allegiance aims to inspire a sense of community among cultural institutions and begin articulating the urgent response our political moment demands,” a nearby plaque states.

Read more: https://www.campusreform.org/?ID=11113


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