Photo by Janice Drake

Celebrityism” refers to the issue that celebrities have become the gods of modern times, and following their every move has become our religion.  Society has become fascinated with every aspect of the celebrity’s existence, not just their body of work, but their social life, their private life, their personal habits. This in turn has created a market for numerous tabloid magazines that focus on all issues of celebrities, and the need for paparazzi to be constantly photographing them, allowing the celebrities no privacy. But without this following, they would lose their celebrity status, so it is a symbiotic relationship that has evolved into a vicious circle, the celebrity with their need to be known, and the public’s insatiable desire to know everything about said celebrity. The public is then bombarded with repeated images of these celebrities. Real news has been replaced with the whereabouts, the relationships, the “causes”, and the autopsy reports of celebrities. This installation of “Celebrityism” is to reflect this obsession with celebrities. The repeated images, as in “Brangelina”, come from several different sources, the same image repeated over and over again, burned into our consciousness. I have chosen ornate frames to represent the royalty status we have given to them. There are obvious references to royalty in “King George” and “Red Carpet”. There are a few obscure (and a few obvious) allusions to religious iconitry.  “TomKat” is surrounded with the mandorla of Our Lady of Guadalupe.  The order of events surrounding “Fed-ex” is an allusion to the Stations of the Cross, culminating in “It’s Over”.  The center of “Anna Nicole” is her and her son and above them represents the stars associated with Mary and the mysteries of the Rosary. “Britney’s Birthday” is a reference to the Hindu Shiva, god of creation and destruction, “Brit Breaks Her Umbrella”, a whirling dervish. “Ocean’s Thirteen” offers George Clooney up as our Savior. A cross between religion and a disease, “Celebrityism”, represents our misplaced values in raising the celebrity above us, concluding in the devaluation of our own lives, and the depreciation of the significance of everyday living.

Copyright Joyce Genari 2010
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