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Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Paradise, I Guess

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Much has been made recently of the willingness of right-wing Protestants and Catholics to put aside their mutual enmity that guaranteed the separation of church and state for so long and join together for the purpose of persecuting gays, molesting young boys and promoting wholesale slaughter on the African continent. Yeehaah!!!

I can add nothing to this discussion that has not been said by people much more articulate than me, so I thought I would contribute visual aids. I was thumbing through Art in America recently and I came across the work of Reverend McKendree Robbins Long (1888-1976), an artist and fundamentalist preacher fond of painting from the Book of Revelations. He liked to load up his brush with garrish colors and was certainly no master of anatomy, and he had a Swaggart-like obsession for repeatedly painting a voluptuous, unnamed woman in lugibrious shades of purple. But in the above painting from 1968, entitled The Damned are Cast into the Lake of Fire and Brimstone, Jesus and the faithful enjoy an afternoon watching heathens writhe in pain as they boil in a lake of fire (kind of like A Sunday on La Grande Jatte meets CIA prisoners in Uzbekistan.)

As Art in America notes, "Long was an archconservative who saw the world in terms of good and evil. His best pictures are those that effectively convey his fervor." I predict speculative prices for his work to shoot up dramatically in the near future.

Welcome to the visions of the New World Order.