Glenn Beck, once a seemingly unstoppable force of cultural disaster, has become more and more irrelevant as the days go by. Ever since his show was canceled, Beck has struggled to remain in the public eye. His latest non-stunt was supposed to give Liberals a taste of their own medicine, but it utterly failed thanks to Beck's complete lack of understanding of how art works. No surprise there!
Fails to grasp how art works.
Beck's artwork (and I use that term loosely) references the infamous work titled "Piss Christ," a 1987 photograph by artist Andres Serrano. The photograph depicted a crucifix submerged in a yellow-orange liquid, which Serrano claimed was his own urine.
"Piss Christ" was a crucial item in the conservative war against the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). Because it won a prize at a regional art competition which was partially funded by the NEA, the Right turned this into "Government dollars sponsored this image." Which isn't entirely true, but since when did logic enter into something like this?
Glenn Beck's work is a clear glass mason jar filled with a pale yellow fluid. Inside it floats a plastic Obama figurine. Beck calls this item "Obama In Pee Pee," and attempted to sell it on eBay. (The auction was canceled as a violation of eBay's strict rules against selling human body fluids on the site.)
"Piss Christ" works because it is a shocking image. People have pretty strong feelings about Christ, and seeing the Son of God submerged in urine was horrifying to many.
"Obama In Pee Pee" does not work, because it is not shocking. First, you have the infantilized term "pee pee," which undercuts any seriousness the work might otherwise have. Second, the figure itself is Obama. Beck may believe that liberals think Obama is the second coming of God, but that doesn't make it so. In fact, many liberals have mixed feelings about Obama at best.
Beck's work also moves the shock from the religious realm to the political one. It's naturally going to be more difficult to get a rise out of people when you attack a political target, versus a religious one.
(Even if the concept was sound, Beck would still be trounced by the Lyndon LaRouchies who parade around with their "Obama wearing a Hitler mustache" placards.)
Beck has since claimed that the fluid is actually Corona beer. Thus nullifying any artistic interest that this object may have had. If any of Beck's followers are getting anything more than an awkward chuckle out of this, I would be surprised.