Installation at LACE (Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions):
Installation at Union Seminary, Art and Social Justice, curated by AA Bronson:
Also published as Printed Matter Artist and Activists pamphlet. Images of select pages:
31 print installation
20″ x 15″ (each)
Archival pigment prints
Hand applied archival ink
“State of the Union” is a thirty-one print installation focused on the U.S. states that have amended their constitution through defense of marriage act ballot measures to explicitly define marriage as between a man and a woman.
Each print is dedicated to one of these states and includes the state ballot title, text of the ballot measure and the official voter results in numeric count and percentage. All text is printed in white Humanist font on a solid lavender background. The opacity of both the printed ballot measure text and the lavender background is dictated by the number of “yes” and “no” votes received. The higher the percentage of “no” votes, the more opaque (saturated) the lavender becomes. For example, if thirty-five percent of the vote was against the measure, the lavender is thirty-five percent opaque. Likewise, the opacity of the ballot text is linked to the “yes” vote and becomes more prominent with the higher “yes” percentage.
Every ballot measure has been copy edited by hand to reverse the negative implications and render marriage between any two people legal. Lavender was chosen as the dominant color because of its historical association with the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered rights and liberation movement.
Clear and direct, the visual tug-of-war representing the “yes” and “no” votes resonates across the prints and throws the individual states into contrast with one another. “State of the Union” is a collection of material that is simultaneously of public record and highly personal. It is a poetic call to action and a necessary record of this shifting and contentious moment in history.
“State of the Union” has also been published as a thirty-two page pamphlet by Printed Matter. Copies are available free-of-charge at Printed Matter, 195 10th Avenue, New York City.