These are unorthodox times, when the United States is consumed by discussion of fake news (a term people regularly misuse to refer to stories they don’t like or trust), finger-pointing (instead of self-reflection), condescension (for instance, someone pointing out that debt-ridden artists are still privileged, even if they themselves are too), and justification for inaction (don’t get me started).
The latest bombshell comes from BuzzFeed, which published an unverified report supposedly by a former British intelligence official that claims Russia has compromising information on President-elect Trump. It’s been manna to the meme-isphere. One of the bullet points in the report has drawn particular attention:
That item ignited the hashtag #goldenshowers, and, well … it went from there.
Art writer/podcaster Tyler Green pointed out that Republicans have been knee deep in piss controversy before, most famously because of Andres Serrano’s photograph “Piss Christ” (1987), which was part of one of the most infamous “culture war” incidents of the 1980s. The Wellcome Collection in the UK couldn’t resist joining the fray. Artist David Colman brought together the worlds of art and politics to give us some comedic thoughts on the matter (pictured at the top of this post).
Memes are reactions to the world, and they have more of an influence on the electoral process than most people are comfortable admitting. Sit back, urine for a treat.
Novelist Rabih Alameddine started a thread of artistic jokes based on the meme. In the tweet below, he reminded us that the ancient Greek god Zeus, who desired the human Danaë, tricked (though, in a modern understanding, we’d probably say “raped”) her in the form of golden rain (often represented as gold coins):
#Goldenshowers has also given older images and tweets new meaning:
But, maybe best of all, it has inspired poetry:
… and scene.