January 1, 2008

Iraq War Memorial Proposal

Of the sculptures from the “Didn't Your Mother Teach You Not to
Play With Fire?� exhibit, I ended up looking at the “Iraq War Memorial
Proposal� sculpture done by Joseph T. Kelly III. I guess I was immediately
drawn to it because of the fact that it had running water seemingly
overflowing from the top of a Washington-Monument-like structure in the
center. The water would come out the top and run down the sides of the
structure in a large bowl of sorts. The dramatic aspect of the work of art
was how this bowl was filled with hundreds of bronze tiny, quarter-sized
skulls surrounding the structure. Obviously the skulls are there to
represent the many lives that have been lost on all sides during the Iraq
war. I feel like the art is supposed to make the viewer think about the
whole war situation and all of that goes into that whole discussion,
because in the end there would never be an official government-sanctioned
memorial of any kind relating to the Iraq war that had things like hundreds
of skulls seemingly surrounding one of the most recognizable patriotic
structures for the U.S. It has to be a form of protest and I respect that
the artist utilized his artistic abilities to go about sending a message in
a less-than-typical way.