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Public-option art? Just don't tell Yosi Sergant

An entry by Amy Martin to the Public Option Please art contest.

Urging artists to promote health-care legislation -- isn't that what got the NEA in trouble a couple of months ago?

This time, though, the push is coming from an advocacy group, Public Option Please, now seeking a political-aesthetic heir to Shepard Fairey, who can sway the minds of voters with clever graphic design.

Politicizing art? Art-icizing politics? Why?

"It allows people to participate in the movement for health care in a way that's not political policy-wonk talk -- to engage people emotionally," said Jane Hamsher, the lefty-blog royalty who is spearheading the campaign with a contest to pick the best poster. "We've had too much discussion about bending the cost curve, and not enough about health care as a human right."

Of course it was one thing for Fairey to turn an image of Barack Obama into the striking "Hope" poster -- he's a photogenic guy! -- another thing to dramatize the argument for government-funded health insurance. You can vote for your favorite on the group's Web site, though the winner will be picked by a panel of judges including Arianna Huffington, Margaret Cho and Jesse Dylan.

Hey, why not Yosi Sergant (the publicist behind "Hope," who resigned his NEA job after a conference call in which he exhorted artists to support the Obama agenda)? "He's been advising us," Hamsher said.

By The Reliable Source  |  November 20, 2009; 1:03 AM ET
Categories:  Politics  
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Art is political. Period. To suggest that art shouldn't be political is to ignore what art is entirely.

Posted by: queenofbabble | November 20, 2009 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Oh! It's an aorotic (sp?) system.

At first, I thought it was a fly and: What does this mean?

Posted by: dadada | November 20, 2009 9:46 PM | Report abuse

Pathetic -- the entire bunch, Yosi, Arianna and all.

Posted by: radbwana | November 21, 2009 9:46 AM | Report abuse

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