political discourse / last text
Last Text, 2016, 26X48", Plaster cell phones, spent gun shells, NRA badges, and encaustic on board.
Excluding suicide, 13,286 people were killed in the US by firearms in 2015, according to the Gun Violence Archive, and 26,819 people were injured.
The American public has become politically anesthetized to gun homicides; taking a person’s life has become normal conflict resolution. This behavior is amplified during times of economic, social, and domestic stress and while individual murders are typically concentrated in economically stressed urban areas, predominately by minority persons, mass shootings have no demographic preference and are conducted by white males.
Despite widespread concern about the impacts of gun violence on public health, Congress has banned the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) from conducting research on gun violence. The powerful gun lobby, represented by National Rifle Association (NRA), serves as the legislative face for gun and ammunition manufactures, and the American military complex that sells low-level militarized equipment to the public. Congress is cowed, at best, to enact stronger gun-control law for the nation.
Because of public de-synthesization to “common” murders, people tend to show momentary shock and concern when mass murder presents itself.
Last Text, presents the trifecta of the NRA’s political influence, gun control and the lives of people and families affected by mass shootings. There is a voice, a person, a loved one behind every incident.
Each of 50 NRA badges in the star field has a ribbon attached. The fabric of each ribbon is cut from different cloth to represent the variety of people who make up the NRA membership. They come from all walks of life: pinstripe, double knit, camouflage, men and women. The badges displace the American stars in a show of all-encompassing political influence at the Federal and State level.
A variety of ammunition is assembled in the stripes to represent not only the ammunitions industry but the dearth of arms used in single and mass killings.