While the trial of impeached former governor Rod Blagojevich continues today, last Thursday I joined Chicago artist Ray Noland (aka CRO) down at the Federal Courthouse. Noland and the crew from the Chicago Urban Art Society (CUAS) passed out his Blagojevich-themed cupcakes to promote his upcoming show at the gallery. The cupcakes featured the famous Run, Blago, Run design, along with chasing dogs (the hounds of justice perhaps?) and a new “Jailhouse Rock” style Blagojevich. See the slideshow for the images (all photographs by Peter Kepha). I joined Noland downtown to witness the cupcake handout firsthand and to interview the artist. Our interview will be published on ArtSlant.com and I’ll post a note here when it is up.
As I’ve written in the past, I’m in favor of art that continues the tradition of political satire. Noland takes part in this tradition with his send up of the disgraced governor. And people responded to it, like one person who asked if the cupcakes were $50,000, referencing Blagojevich’s alleged attempt to sell President Obama’s Senate seat. Others were just happy for free desert. Whatever the response, it was all good for Noland, who succeeded in getting the word about his show out, his art out, and made people a little happier in the process.