Support Hyperallergic’s independent arts journalism.
The midterm election marks a turning point. It was not a split decision; the Senate’s momentary Republican majority is the result of a fluke in the electoral map. With the Democratic takeover of the House, the obscenities of the Trump regime will meet their first constitutiosnal check.
But committee gavels and subpoena powers can’t stop the continuing corruption of the judiciary, or prevent the perversion of executive authority, or cure a diseased body politic.
If the poison that has been leaching into the nation’s bloodstream since the 1950s can be given a name, it would be Roy Cohn. With his monumental talents as a manipulator, cheat, and liar, Cohn became the quintessential fixer whose shamelessness, malevolence, and hypocrisy are matched only by the improbable rise of his protégé, Donald Trump.
As a young Assistant US Attorney in New York, a job he landed through his father’s connections, Cohn boasted of helping to secure the death penalty in the espionage trial of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg. Moving to Washington on the recommendation of J. Edgar Hoover, he was hired by Senator Joseph McCarthy to serve as chief counsel for the infamous Army-McCarthy hearings on Communist infiltration in the State Department. A closeted homosexual, he became an architect of the Lavender Scare, which led to the ban on gays in the federal government. After McCarthy’s sham investigations ended in disgrace, Cohn moved back to New York, where he reinvented himself as a high-flying socialite and high-priced mob lawyer. In 1986, he was disbarred for egregiously unethical behavior; weeks later, he died penniless of AIDS, though he denied until the end that he had the disease.
“Where’s my Roy Cohn?”
The historic midterm turnout, reflecting permanent demographic shifts, has decisively rejected the dank nationalism, cosseted corruption, and heinous racism of the president and his henchmen. But it’s just a beginning. This week has also shown that Trump will not sink quietly into his own hollowness. The damage he is capable of wreaking as he grasps at the wind, howling for his protector, is incalculable. But whatever chaos is to come, one thing is certain: Roy Cohn is dead.
* * *
Editor’s Note: With the change in the political climate, Drawing in a Time of Fear & Lies will downshift from its current weekly schedule, reappearing whenever a voice needs to be heard.
Every utopia is a social experiment, the artist suggests in this commission for the Performa performance art biennial, and we’re ultimately the guinea pigs.
“You can’t live in a house that’s built upon your back.” This is one of the more memorable phrases spoken by the scripted lovers of Tschabalala Self’s Sounding Board, what Performa describes in its promotional materials as an “experimental play.” That phrase, uttered by one romantic partner to the other, operates as guidance, warning, dictate,…
Two K-12 art teachers will each receive a $1,000 cash gift and an additional $500 to put toward classroom art supplies. Nominations are due October 31.
A commitment to trans subjects, and their queer communities, is manifested as a holding environment made approachable by our concern, grounded in intimacy and legacy, enfolding any viewer who will stop, listen, and receive love.
Todd Chandler’s documentary Bulletproof looks at the many people monetizing the societal rot of school shootings.
In Philadelphia, a series of solo shows delves into the interdisciplinary practices of graduates whose work explores identity, familial bonds, political constructs, and nature’s fragility.
On November 14, join Columbia University School of the Arts for virtual information sessions with the program chair, faculty, and staff.
The artists released the risograph-printed booklet series Organizing Power to assist in the arduous process of assembling a bargaining unit and negotiating.
From 1963 through 1968, Warhol produced nearly 650 films, including hundreds of Screen Tests and dozens of full-length movies.
Melvin Edwards, Maren Hassinger, and Alison Saar are among the artists kicking off the Destination Crenshaw initiative.