I’ve been reading this book lately, in researching my Jesus portrait series.
Even though I’m only about half way through, I felt that I would give it a pitch.
It’s pretty fantastic.
What I like is that she really embraces the concept of kitsch instead of taking a haughty perspective on it. She’s interested in the positive potential of kitsch images as well as the implications of a culture that creates and buys such huge quantities of cheap crap.
I’m totally implicated here. Note the “wall of Jesus” in our apartment.
The “Sacred Heart of Jesus” below is a special prize. Whey you pass by it, it changes from a scene with an angel and two running children into Jesus opening up his chest (out of wich the children sometimes appear to be running).
This one lights up.
It’s from a funeral home.
I think my personal fascination with this stuff is, as I said in the last post, partly misguided nostalgia. I grew up with the sappiest bulletin covers and Warner Sallman knock-offs America was printing. It’s also that kitsch has become, for me, a way of introducing a conversation about Christianity and my own experience of it through visual art.
Either way, Spackman nails it right just about every time.
For another take on Christianity and kitsch, may I refer you to my ever-eloquent wife’s blog.