Oct. 2, 2018 By Nathaly Pesantez
Posters are up in Greenpoint and Williamsburg showing a naked group of men all accused of sexual assault and misconduct—Bill Cosby, Harvey Weinstein, President Donald Trump, Kevin Spacey, and Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
The images, one near the corner of Manhattan and Driggs Avenue, and the other near North 6th Street and Bedford Avenue, are poster versions of “The Emperor’s New Clothes”, a painting by Angela China, a New York City based artist.
China, who also goes by Gumshoeart, says the painting is based on Picasso’s “Les Demoiselles d’Avignon”, which proved shocking and controversial when it was completed in 1907 for the way it portrayed five women from a brothel.
China’s interpretation of the painting, similar to the way many have come to view it, is of a “degrading and uncomplimentary objectification of women,” she said on Instagram. The painting’s jagged edges, sharp lines, and mask-like faces all work to strip the women, likely victims of sexual assault, of their identity and agency.
Her goal in recreating the painting is to take power away from those who have been accused of sexual misconduct and assault.
“This is a painting for survivors, she said, adding, “The faces of these men are a representation of all and my assaulters. Now they are vulnerable and degraded. Now I have the power.”
The posters, pasted on several walls around the city with some already taken down, featured the original mask-like face on one of the figures. But in recent days, the artist has gone around updating the posters to include Kavanaugh’s face, noting she “felt a strong urgency to make an adjustment” to the piece.
Many have snapped and shared photos of the posters on social media, including captions in support of the message.
“Nailed it,” one Instagram user wrote.
“A powerful reflection of an uncomfortable reality,” another user wrote.
Bill Cosby was recently sentenced to prison for at least three years for sexual assault, while Harvey Weinstein faces charges of rape and criminal sex acts. Last year, Kevin Spacey was accused of sexual misconduct in a BuzzFeed report, which led to a wave of similar claims by many others.
Trump has been accused of sexual harassment by multiple women, while Kavanaugh, his pick for the Supreme Court, has been accused by several women of sexual assault and misconduct, with the FBI now investigating allegations against him.
I just found out about this in Dec-2018. I’m all for freedom of expression, but does the artist realize that she is inadvertently immortalizing these guys? Its time for these names & faces to be retired once and for all. Also, can we put our money and time towards more important people and causes? IMO, the time and money spent on this “mural” could’ve been more constructive on something else. A few more worthy recipients are actual sex assault survivors, the homeless, the poor, people incarcerated that can’t post bail, refugees, etc. The irony is that these men have millions of dollars and yet we spend more time and money on them. Its time to start spending our resources on people & things that really could use our attention.
Art is “Free Speech”, it’s the artist’s way to express their inner feelings. You might not enjoy some of it, but it has been part of human history since Cave Drawings.
THE NORTH 6TH STREET POSTER WAS DESTROYED I CHECKED TODAY
Are there any children living in Greenpoint/Williamsburg? This is not appropriate.
Nope. There’s no kids. We good.
I know this comment won’t ever be posted but THIS is a case where spraying graffiti over the picture is WARRANTED. As in…SPRAY THE ENTIRE PICTURE TO COVER IT.
To put Kavanaugh and Trump on the same zipcode as Cosby and Weinstein is absolute garbage. BUT I suppose one should expect Garbage(liberals) to produce garbage.
And I see no reason how putting actual pictures up, help “survivors” in any way except REMINDING THEM. Liberals are truly warped people.
oh by the way….Kavanaugh is getting confirmed. Cry, Liberals. CRY.
Yeah just because Trump literally has a wikipedia page listing all the women that have accused him of sexual assault.
And he bragged about sexually assaulting women on a bus with Billy Bush
And he defended and endorsed Roy Moore after we learned he was allegedly a pedophile
And he defended former staff secretary Rob Porter who allegedly abused his ex-wives
And he defended Roger Ailes after the sexual harassment charges
And he defended Bill O’Reilly after the sexual harassment charges
And he attacked Kavanaugh’s accuser at a rally
….doesn’t mean he’s like the other abusers
I agree with you. There is no explaining the warped liberal mind. It truly is a mental disorder.
Keep strong Judge Kavansugh you will son be on the Supreme Court.
You got THAT offended by a poster?
Why are Trumpeters so sensitive?
Toughen up snowflake.
Most people and scholars have not come to view “Les Demoiselles d’Avignon” as degrading to women. Did you bother to research this or did you just take one person’s opinion?
They forgot Bill Clinton.
Please clean up the grammar on these posts. I love these sites. But when your lede is: “Posters have gone in Greenpoint and Williamsburg showing a naked”… have “gone” what? How are we supposed to move on from there. Come on.