Bikes Get the Middle Finger From Nissan

One reason it sucks to be an earnest liberal do-gooder hippie douchebag (did I miss anything?) is that the bad guys are so hard to pin down. Oh, we’ve got our Koch Brothers and our Cuccinellis, but most big-bucks black hats frolic in relative obscurity.

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To top it off, the worst of the bad guys isn’t a guy at all — not a person, that is.
corporationI’ve always thought this figure from The Corporation movie poster is an incredible case of truth in graphic design. People who work for corporations aren’t good guys or bad guys, they’re — you’re — just people trying to maximize profit and thus keep your jobs. It’s hard to find a satisfactory, out-and-out evildoer in the ranks of a corporation, the kind who cackles “Muahahaha!” while tying an innocent young wind turbine to some train tracks.

Until now.

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Mark D. Grieve & Ilana Spector, “Cyclisk,” city of Santa Rosa, California

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Mark D. Grieve & Ilana Spector, “Cyclisk,” city of Santa Rosa, California

It looks like Voldemort’s “Magic is Might” sculpture from Harry Potter, doesn’t it?

“Harry looked more closely and realized that what he had thought were decoratively carved thrones were actually mounds of carved humans: hundreds and hundreds of naked bodies, men, women and children… twisted and pressed together to support the weight of the handsomely robed wizards.”

Only made of smushed bikes. And instead of making a throne for a couple of cars — I guess that would be too overt — Grieve and Spector’s sculpture is just giving the whole city the finger.
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Best of all — well, two things. You may have guessed this was paid for by Nissan, but do you know why? They had to fund some art as part of the city’s 1% For Art law! That’s right, they were legally required to spend $37,000 on art when they built their big new dealership, and someone inside the company took the opportunity to commission a giant middle finger made of dead bikes!
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And the artists they hired actually think they’re celebrating bikes! In fact, the artists were so fervent about their ostensibly pro-bike sculpture, they even gave up their fee so they could afford to add more carcasses to it! Imagine the Nissan rep’s reaction when s/he heard they wanted to do that!

That’s a Muahaha moment if I ever heard of one. Corporate evil may be scary, but somewhere in a cubicle at Nissan is proof that human evil will always be scarier.

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2 responses to “Bikes Get the Middle Finger From Nissan

  1. Bikes aside, that is one ugly piece of “art.” Though I’d assume requiring commercial builders to provide art would never end particularly well. And there’s no legislating decent taste into any 1% law, unfortunately.

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