Each summer, in state capitals around America, farmers and entertainers come together to thrill and amuse a grateful public. In many, the central attraction has become sculptures made entirely out of butter, depicting farm scenes, rural life and popular culture. In these temporary spectacles Americans see themselves reflected and celebrated.
In November 2008, America elected its first black president. Spirits rose and many voters allowed their expectations to soar to biblical levels, while others seethed in barely concealed contempt. Barack Obama has, almost inevitably, disappointed many of his supporters and has continued to be reviled by those naysayers who have taken to calling him a Socialist, a Marxist, and a Fascist, and have even questioned his very nationality, concealing, perhaps, other motives.
“Industry of the Ordinary” will create a portrait of the President during the final weeks of his re-election campaign, sculpting his likeness in butter and transporting him around his adopted hometown of Chicago.
This sculpture of Obama will be moved atop a wheeled platform, inside a cooled glass-fronted container, through the streets of the city in the run up to, and aftermath of, the election. A camera crew will accompany it on its way and document the reactions of the public, creating a portrait of a culture in transition.
The piece will begin at 842 W Lake Street, Chicago, IL 60607 and will continue for several hours until it is delivered to the Chicago Cultural Center in the late afternoon, to become part of the ‘Industry of the Ordinary: Sic Transit Gloria Mundi’ exhibition.
Live location updates will be delivered via Twitter feed at: @IOTOrdinary
and via IOTO’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/IndustryoftheOrdinary