Best Political Art Exhibit (2005)

Thought Crimes: The Art of Subversion

This spring DiverseWorks looked less like a conventional art gallery and more like an illicit guerrilla bunker. It housed work from some of the most creative minds in culture jamming, the hit-and-run art of media intervention. The image of a baby strapped with TNT, below the words "Hamas Baby Bomb," appeared on a faux postage stamp, which artist Michael Hernandez de Luna had stuck to an envelope and mailed to himself without a glitch. Dozens of similar terrorist envelopes lined the wall. Another installation urged visitors to cut off the labels from their clothes using a pair of scissors and pin them to a world map based on their sweatshop of origin. The creepiest exhibit, Roach Zapped!, featured a cage full of live, Malagasy giant hissing cockroaches. Each roach was strapped with an RFID tag, a technology Wal-Mart is implementing to track its products (which could easily track them straight into homes). The artists, the collective Preemptive Media, asked patrons to take a roach with them and release it in a Wal-Mart, where its RFID tag would flash the company computers with messages such as "Stop the Creep!"


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