February 4, 2013

Chinese Transcendentalism

Photojournalist Feng Li has some truly epic images of Tienanmen Square in the recent post on Beijing pollution at In Focus. Like the giant video wall above, which feels like a cross between Blade Runner and Happy Together. And...
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Posted by greg at 11:31 AM

January 9, 2013

Supreme Sforza

image: protestor in front of the US Supreme Court on Jan. 8, 2013, the 11th anniversary of the opening of the Guantanamo prison. by Saul Loeb for AFP/Getty I've been meaning for a couple of weeks now to post...
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Posted by greg at 8:26 AM

November 13, 2012

Study For A Fence And A Wall (2006)

On July 11, 2006, on the floor of the US House of Representatives, Congressman Steve King, Republican from Iowa, presented a model of "a fence and a wall" he had designed. It was a site-specific proposal, to be located...
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Posted by greg at 9:23 PM

November 5, 2012

'Whites, Lancaster, Oh, US'

I realize that if I don't mention these now, I never will. Because by this time tomorrow--or the next day--all will be right with the world again. Mitt Romney will have an abundance of time on his hands, and,...
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Posted by greg at 8:51 PM

October 31, 2012

'You Need A Donation To Get In Line'

image: Brian Snyder/Reuters via Buzzfeed Mitt Romney's campaign had already printed the "Victory Rally" press passes when they hastily decided to turn an Ohio stump speech into a "storm relief event" yesterday. So Romney could be photographed receiving canned...
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Posted by greg at 9:37 AM

October 29, 2012

Sforzian Pano

Oh, Romney, Romney, Romney. This Romney staffer's Instragrammed collage of a Las Vegas rally has been making the rounds because, holy smokes, people, everyone knows that the Republican tent is not that big, and anyway, right now it only has...
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Posted by greg at 4:35 PM

October 15, 2012

Homeless Hotspot

From the Washington Post report, "Charity president unhappy about Paul Ryan soup kitchen 'photo op'":He added: "The photo-op they did wasn't even accurate. He did nothing. He just came in here to get his picture taken at the dining...
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Posted by greg at 8:32 PM

October 14, 2012

Merkel Jacket Matching System

The "The Girls Of Berlusconi" collection makes it rather NSFW, but The Spectacle of The Tragedy, Dutch designer Noortje van Eekelen's "visual database of the European Show and its Leading Actors is pretty amazing. Don't you worry none about that...
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Posted by greg at 9:47 PM

October 6, 2012

Sforzian Trophy

Rep. Paul Broun, a physician, with an MD, and a BS in Chemistry, who is a Republican member of the House Science Committee, was speaking at the Liberty Baptist Church Sportsman's Banquet in September when he called out evolution...
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Posted by greg at 6:10 PM

October 3, 2012

Crusoe Umbrella X Satellite

On the eve of the first presidential debate, I gank this photo, taken in March 1988: The Claes Oldenburg sculpture, Crusoe Umbrella, on Nollen Plaza in Des Moines, Iowa, is surrounded by satellite dishes and equipment trucks beaming live...
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Posted by greg at 7:49 PM

September 20, 2012

Gosh And Golly, Those Aren't Swear Words

Three words: Oh my heck. [dissociativepress.com via @petcobra]...
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Posted by greg at 11:02 PM

September 19, 2012

Malcolm X, Black Muslim, Sforzian

Maurice Berger has a fascinating post on the NY Times Lens blog about Malcolm X's sophisticated use of the media, particularly photography, and particularly the antagonistic white/mainstream media, to reach out to potential black constituents. Exhibit 1--actually and unfortunately, it's...
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Posted by greg at 10:16 PM

September 17, 2012

Blurromney

It's not like this hasn't happened before. I remember one time, in the late 1990s, at the Stedelijk, being transfixed by a series of videos Gabriel Orozco had made. I was already very interested in his work for a...
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Posted by greg at 9:54 PM

September 11, 2012

One Song More

Wow, is it that time of Election Year already? When superblogger and apparently self-hating theater queen Andrew [Lloyd] Sullivan posts a WTF Obamafied version of a Les Mis anthem? This time it's "One Term More" which, Holy Cameron Mackintosh, people....
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Posted by greg at 11:53 AM

September 1, 2012

Running Presidential Fence

I'm really trying to get this writing thing done tonight, but I just have to point out that Richard Smith's photo of the Secret Service's six-mile perimeter fence at the RNC in Tampa is awesome. It's like if Christo...
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Posted by greg at 10:53 PM

August 30, 2012

We Built It.

A photo I've been waiting to see from the RNC in Tampa, unidentified source via brian boucher factchecking update: you know, I'm gonna go with: this debt clock photo is as true as this one....
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Posted by greg at 3:03 PM

August 20, 2012

Frank Lloyd Right, Or The Sforzian Hearth

Ooh, the party conventions are coming, Sforzian Fashion Week, and the NYTimes' advance team is reporting on the GOP advance team whose once-every-four-years job is to make the Republican candidate for president come across as a man of the...
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Posted by greg at 5:32 PM

August 14, 2012

The New Sforzian Aesthetic

This is awesome. Someone flew a banner over a Paul Ryan event in Lakewood, Colorado, carrying a @PaulRyanGosling-esque quote, "Hey Girl, Choose me, lose choice." And though he didn't know what it was, CNBC reporter @EamonJavers tweeted a photo...
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Posted by greg at 5:43 PM

July 14, 2012

Sforzian Acoustics

One of Karl Rove's objectives for his Sforzian backdrops was "to set up picture so that if the television sound is turned down, that it gets across what it is the President wants." With this new ad, "Firms," [direct...
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Posted by greg at 9:04 PM

July 7, 2012

New Aesthetic X Middle Earth

Nice hack. I didn't realize James Bridle made the awesome ALL HAIL SAURON placard at the The Shard laser show; I just thought he spotted it. Anyway, Phil Gyford thinks placards could become a platform, a way to integrate...
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Posted by greg at 6:36 AM

June 1, 2012

Sforzian Off Into The Sunset

The first thing I noticed about George W. Bush's official White House portrait unveiled yesterday was the way he stared off into space. Also in the painting. And the next thing was the painting-in-painting right over his shoulder. It...
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Posted by greg at 9:37 PM

May 29, 2012

Trump, Sforza. Sforza, Trump.

Here is Mitt Romney deplaning in Las Vegas, where he met with Gingrich's bank, and where reality [sic] TV personality Donald Trump is hosting a fundraiser for him. Suffice it to say, Romney is either actually courting the Trump...
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Posted by greg at 8:06 PM

May 17, 2012

Painting Truth To Power

Ooh, that is interesting. By covering themselves in paint, members of Occupy Frankfurt effectively inverted the crowd control technique where police use dye cannons to disperse protesters--and to tag them for easier identification and roundup later. Nice to see...
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Posted by greg at 5:53 PM

April 9, 2012

North Korea Shows Its Big Board

The Japanese blog Itai [Painful] News has a nice photo roundup showing how North Korea's missile rocket control room compares to those of other spacefaring countries. I think it's safe to say that Japan is cowering in fear at...
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Posted by greg at 8:51 AM

March 3, 2012

Robert Montgomery: Spectacular Vernacular

I've got a few reservations, but I'm really quite smitten with London-based Scottish artist Robert Montgomery's poetically critical billboard artworks. The one above was unfurled at a Stop The War protest in Trafalgar Square last October. It reads:WHEN WE...
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Posted by greg at 8:47 PM

February 7, 2012

R-Money, R-Problems

R-M-O Oh my heck! N-E-Y This awesomely remixed version of this AP photo [by Gerald Herbert, below] from a campaign event in Elko, Nevada last Friday makes me marvel at the many lost opportunities for Sforzian hacks in the...
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Posted by greg at 7:27 AM

December 31, 2011

How Firm A Foundation

See, this is the kind of frugal Sforzian stagecraft that Mitt Romney learned from his Mormon pioneer ancestors: just use the replica sets from The Music Man and con a local into holding your chair! There's no trouble in...
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Posted by greg at 9:13 AM

December 17, 2011

Son Of Strelka, Son Of God, By Dan Warren

While I was painting today, I first listened to a slightly underwhelming Q&A from MIT with Otto Piene and Hans Haacke, which was short, and so my iTunes started shuffling, which never happens. I don't really listen to music,...
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Posted by greg at 4:01 PM

December 12, 2011

On Politics, Damn Politics, And Art

I don't know what, if anything, these mean, but these two stories last week made me wonder about the relationship of art and politics and Washington DC as viewed from a political/media perspective. First up, and most disturbing, was the...
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Posted by greg at 11:24 PM

December 5, 2011

Erased De Kooning, Erased Nixon

The new issue of Cabinet arrived today [free with my new iPad case!], and it includes a fascinating article by Susan Schuppli about the 18 1/2-minutes of erased audiotape at the center of the Watergate scandal. Apparently, the National Archives...
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Posted by greg at 9:36 PM

November 22, 2011

Let's See You Try To Pepper Spray Them NOW, Hmm?

Wait, the UC Davis Occupy protestors built a 30-foot geodesic dome for their general assembly? Of course they did. This is not a drill, people. Welcome to the Pepper Dome. [image via @amychamp] Previously: jackboot, Bean Boot...
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Posted by greg at 11:13 PM

November 19, 2011

Jackboot, Bean Boot

The video is absolutely riveting, all the way through. And though it's outrageous &c &c., the casual pepper spraying of the seated student protestors is only the second or third most important takeaway from this clip. That said, I...
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Posted by greg at 1:44 PM

November 15, 2011

Maintaining Power

Gotta hand it to the Bloomberg Administration: scheduling the expulsion of the Occupy Wall Street protesters for the middle of the night, and then arresting and beating and harassing journalists covering the raid, thereby minimizing--but apparently not eliminating entirely--the...
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Posted by greg at 11:56 PM

September 27, 2011

Look Into The Teleprompter

Ooh, this is nice. I can't remember seeing a White House photographer use a teleprompter to pick up a crowd like this before. Carry on, Stephen Crowley of The New York Times! Not that Mr. Crowley's colleagues didn't find...
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Posted by greg at 8:34 PM

September 26, 2011

This Week In Revolutionary Twitter Juxtapositions

I need a way to put the people in my Twitter feed in touch with each other. Because what are we fighting for, if not the right to all 50 flavors of Doritos?...
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Posted by greg at 5:10 PM

Cast Out First The Economic Terrorist Beam That Is In Thine Own Eye

From a NY Times article about a gay activist's petition for Microsoft to stop participating in an online affiliate sales company CGBG, which earns revenue for anti-gay groups like Focus on the Family:"This is economic terrorism," said Mike Huckabee, the...
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Posted by greg at 10:33 AM

September 19, 2011

Two Of These Things

As those who kindly email me about run-on italics--and those who don't--know, I don't actually visit this site site as often as I probably should. Which is part of the reason I didn't notice until just now this nice side-by-side...
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Posted by greg at 8:46 PM

September 11, 2011

Sforzian Frontdrops, Or Just When You Thought It Was Safe To Go Back In The Bathtub

An extraordinary Reuters photo from the World Trade Center Mem--wait, I guess now we'd better make that "ordinary." Maybe add an integrated teleprompter or heads up display? And Joe Biden complains that the Secret Service won't let him drive...
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Posted by greg at 10:15 PM

September 5, 2011

Henry Billings Strafing Paintings

Another inadvertent Google find, also from the World War II School of propaganda art. In anticipation for an invasion of Japan, 1945 LIFE Magazine wanted to give the general public a fighter pilot's-eye view of ground attacks. Perhaps because...
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Posted by greg at 8:40 PM

The Greatest Photomural Ever Sold

Instead of jumping to the first search result, Google's "I'm feeling lucky" button should go to something tangentially related but certifiably awesome and probably better than what you were looking for in the first place. For the first datapoint...
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Posted by greg at 12:02 PM

August 28, 2011

Brandstorming

michael appleton for nyt Such a great shot, such artful product placement. While it's unfortunately still true that you cannot buy publicity like this, only the most foolish brand evangelist will find himself unprepared when disaster coverage strikes. hiroko...
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Posted by greg at 7:50 AM

August 22, 2011

Not Steinberg, Wallace, Nabakov Or Qaddafi

Oh brother, I have this giant post mostly written about how Leo Steinberg's awesome 1997 lecture Encounters With Rauschenberg includes all these references that show that, not only did he recognize the intimate interrelationships between Johns' and Rauschenberg's early...
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Posted by greg at 3:26 PM

August 19, 2011

EPIC FOIA DHS

The Electronic Privacy Information Center filed a Freedom of Information Act request with the Department of Homeland Security on the government's deployment of body scanner technology on streets and in roving vans. These are the three pages of the...
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Posted by greg at 8:50 AM

June 26, 2011

Sgarbian Backdrops

The near-universal consensus from the VIP opening was that the Italian Pavilion exhibition curated by art critic/Berlusconi apparatchik Vittorio Sgarbi was an unalloyed, over-politicized disaster. Yet so far, I have seen very little substantive criticism or engagement with it. Rome-based...
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Posted by greg at 2:41 PM

May 16, 2011

Police Action Painting

Police spraying protesters in Kampala, Uganda, May 10, 2011 [image james akena/reuters via cfr.org] I haven't been able to get these images out of my head since Brian Sholis pointed to them; they're stunning and disturbing at once. As...
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Posted by greg at 8:38 PM

Masterpieces From The Getty Collection: The Unknown Gingrich-Brooks Sforzian Master

Holy smokes, this has to be the greatest photo of David Brooks and Newt Gingrich anyone has taken or ever will take. Will the uncredited Getty Images photographer who was in the Russell Building stairwell last week please step...
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Posted by greg at 1:53 PM

May 12, 2011

Sforzian, Deleuzian. Deleuzian, Sforzian.

"One idea could be using mirrors so photographers could do their jobs out of the president's sight line, the White House's Earnest said." My mind is blown and I am still picking up the pieces after contemplating the possibility that...
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Posted by greg at 10:16 PM

It's All Done With Mirrors

So long, Sforzian Replays. After Reuters photographer Jason Reed went all meta about it on his blog last week, the White House has decided to do away with the longstanding practice of re-enacting speeches for reporters from different media."We have...
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Posted by greg at 6:46 PM

May 7, 2011

Sforzian Job Well Done!

The death of the Sforzian Backdrop has been greatly exaggerated. They may not show it off every day, but it turns out that the Obama White House's advance team speaks fluent Sforza. As these AP photos from the President's congratulatory...
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Posted by greg at 9:26 PM

May 3, 2011

Sforzian Replay

Photographers take pictures of U.S. President Barack Obama after he announced the death of Osama bin Laden live on television from the East Room of the White House on May 1, 2011. So I was looking at Reuters White...
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Posted by greg at 9:13 PM

May 2, 2011

Pakistani Camo Landscape

These people are not wearing their videoconference faces. According to the EXIF data, White House photographer Pete Souza took this photo at 4:05 PM, or 1:05 AM Abbottabad Time, five minutes in. They're watching it as it happened. Which...
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Posted by greg at 7:02 PM

Partly In Jest

NPR interviewed former National Intelligence Director John Negroponte this morning. Steve Inskeep asked a too-long question about the multi-year intelligence work that resulted in yesterday's attack on Osama bin Laden's compound in Pakistan:Did some of this happen while you were...
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Posted by greg at 10:24 AM

Tuymanmatic

Apparently the first footage released from inside Osama bin Laden's Abbottabad compound was shot on an iPhone with Hipstamatic's new Luc Tuymans filter....
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Posted by greg at 9:54 AM

May 1, 2011

Mission Accomplished

Previously, besides basically everything: Errol Morris talking about the Bush era with Stockholm Syndrome-afflicted WH photo editors....
[read the full post...]
Posted by greg at 11:23 PM

April 17, 2011

1,000 Or 1 Chairs

Though there was some buzz about the "Chinese Embassy" on 42nd Street, which is actually the UN Mission, I wasn't seeing anything in the twitterstream about the protesting the arrest and detention of Ai Weiwei by restaging a global version...
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Posted by greg at 3:13 PM

April 7, 2011

Donald Trump Will Not Be President.

I went to the groundbreaking ceremony for MoMA's new building. It was held in a large tent in the Sculpture Garden. The time came when all the VIPs were supposed to don ceremonial hardhats, and take their ceremonial shovels,...
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Posted by greg at 1:40 PM

March 1, 2011

On War-Era Murals

The question or theme or whatever hadn't crystallized for me, but when Tyler linked to the previous two posts about Lt. Comm. Edward Steichen's wartime propaganda exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art, he noted that "there's a lot...
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Posted by greg at 9:47 PM

February 24, 2011

The Road To Victory And Beyond

So in my ersatz zigzagging through the history of photomurals, I kind of skipped from Edward Steichen's landmark Family of Man exhibition in 1955, where Paul Rudolph deployed enlarged photo prints for content and experience, as well as architectural...
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Posted by greg at 10:56 PM

December 13, 2010

Sforzian Up-do

A nice Sforzian moment in Haiti, where Fox News employee Sarah Palin recently got her hair fixed by a stylist, an unwed high school dropout teen mom, during a private tour of preacher Franklin Graham's cholera compound. Private except...
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Posted by greg at 11:18 AM

November 27, 2010

They Don't Want Any Fingerprints

Sforza to the end. The AP caption: "John Scott cleans the podium on the stage in preparation for the groundbreaking ceremony for the George W. Bush Presidential Center in Dallas, Tuesday, Nov. 16, 2010." [daylife...
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Posted by greg at 9:06 AM

November 13, 2010

Sea Force One

Christoph Brech is the master of the meaningful tight shot. In Sea Force One, he focuses in on a pair of workers in a small boat who are scrubbing the hull of Francois Pinault's black yacht in front of Punta...
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Posted by greg at 11:55 AM

November 12, 2010

The Cruel Radiance, Or What Are You People Thinking?

Remind me again where I got the idea to buy Susie Linfield's new book, The Cruel Radiance: Photography and Political Violence? I ordered it two weeks ago, but it just arrived yesterday, which turns out to be too long after...
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Posted by greg at 7:35 AM

November 2, 2010

Half-Keynesian

This is pretty damn funny. I heard somewhere that it's unconstitutional for a president to be even half-Keynesian. I think it was Fox Business. [via andrewsullivan]...
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Posted by greg at 1:41 PM

September 28, 2010

New Original Sunshine Clubhouse

In order to prove how much less torture&abusey the new Parwan detention center is from the Bagram prison it's replacing, US military officials let AP photographer David Guttenfelder take a picture of the new Original Sunshine Clubhouse playground at...
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Posted by greg at 8:22 AM

August 21, 2010

On The Set With Grenada Invasion Re-Enactors

Awesome. The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library contains several elaborate sets where visiting elementary school students re-enact the invasion of Grenada. "[I]n keeping with Mr. Reagan's first career as an actor," the Wall Street Journal writes, presumably without irony, "the Reagan...
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Posted by greg at 3:09 PM

May 28, 2010

The Togs Must Be Crazy

Colorful, cheap African textiles: they're not just for Yinka Shonibare anymore! Called Pagne in West Africa and Kanga [also khanga] in Tanzania, 1x1.5m screenprinted cotton wraps are produced all across Africa. There is a tradition to make commemorative kanga...
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Posted by greg at 9:43 AM

March 16, 2010

Quick, Do Not Think Of Rielle Hunter

From a 1983 New York Times profile of up-and-coming artist/photographer Cindy Sherman:One day several years ago, in the studio of David Salle, who borrows extensively from the media, Miss Sherman saw a soft-porn magazine photograph of ''a housewife looking sexy''...
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Posted by greg at 9:40 AM

January 21, 2010

The Washington Wives School

You start pulling on a thread, and you never quite know what starts to come out. For some great stories about the Washington Gallery for Modern Art and "The Popular Image Exhibition," reader JA suggested, I should really check out...
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Posted by greg at 10:52 PM

January 12, 2010

'Little Uglies'

I've had a research question simmering on the back burner for a while, trying to figure out what the history of modernism and contemporary art have been in Washington DC. Partly, it was the dearth of good modernist architecture that...
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Posted by greg at 4:41 PM

November 20, 2009

Someone Left The Cranks Out In The Rain

Angry crowd surrounds a fleeing Sarah Palin bus and shouts, "Sign our books!" and "Quitter!" You go to the bookstore with the mob you have, I guess, not the mob you want. priceless angry comments on rumproast via @felixsalmon]...
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Posted by greg at 1:19 PM

November 18, 2009

Finally, Sarah Palin's Stylist Comes Out Of The Closet

Now the truth can be told, says Lisa Kline, the New York corporate stylist who was called in on a moment's notice over Labor Day weekend by the McCain campaign to provide clothing and hair and makeup for, first, Sarah...
[read the full post...]
Posted by greg at 8:47 PM

November 4, 2009

Oy. White House Sends Alma Thomas Painting Back To The Hirshhorn

I guess I can understand if the White House saw the rightwing faux-controversy over Alma Thomas's Watusi (Hard Edge) as an unhelpful distraction, and it's not like the country elected Obama to be curator-in-chief, but that doesn't mean their...
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Posted by greg at 11:43 PM

October 10, 2009

On Wingnuts On Alma Thomas

I guess it doesn't matter anymore that I don't see why the White House's art borrowing is news now, when almost the entire list was already published and discussed four months ago [and many weeks before that, too]. Because...
[read the full post...]
Posted by greg at 1:23 PM

October 7, 2009

The Modern's Image Of Freedom Competition

News that the Amon Carter Museum in Fort Worth acquired a painting by Charles Sheeler of the Boulder Dam sent me looking for more, and guess what I found? Sheeler's painting is one of six commissioned in 1938 by...
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Posted by greg at 3:44 PM

August 4, 2009

Frosty Myers Winners

Before I realized that if I wanted to see an exhibit of a 100-ft silver balloon, I'd have to make it myself, I was still just ruminating on art I hoped/wished someone would make. One of those projects I...
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Posted by greg at 12:03 AM

July 23, 2009

Israelis Just Wanna Have Fun, Huh?

Wow. This is a commercial for Cellcom, an Israeli cell phone provider. Check out the [so far unacknowledged] original, "Yeah, yeah, We speak perfect English. Just Serve," a documentary short made by Wholphin editor Brent Hoff and Josh Bearman...
[read the full post...]
Posted by greg at 2:48 PM

July 21, 2009

On Billboards, Or More Precisely, Not On Billboards

Damn, but that is one fantastic propaganda billboard. James Hill shot it for the NY Times. Apparently, it's in Abkhazia, and the two guys are the presidents of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, two breakaway provinces of Georgia. LAXART curates an...
[read the full post...]
Posted by greg at 2:56 PM

July 19, 2009

Signed, Richard Nixon

Left behind on the moon:This commemorative plaque, attached to the leg of the Lunar Module (LM), Eagle, is engraved with the following words: "Here men from the planet Earth first set foot upon the Moon July, 1969 A.D. We...
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Posted by greg at 9:40 PM

June 9, 2009

Yes We Kandinsky!

P060709PS-0038, originally uploaded by The Official White House Photostream. That would be the President and all his men getting a private view of the Pompidou's Kandinsky retrospective, as seen in the official White House flickr stream. Also: Calder; Goncharova,...
[read the full post...]
Posted by greg at 3:27 PM

June 4, 2009

June 4th: June 5th, 5th Man

Incredible updates to the Tank Man photographs story from yesterday's NY Times Lens blog. After twenty years of just telling friends about it, Terril Jones, a former AP reporter who had been covering the Tienanmen Square demonstrations for several weeks,...
[read the full post...]
Posted by greg at 11:55 PM

June 3, 2009

Four Men With Cameras And An Elephant

The NY Times' Lens blog has absolutely riveting accounts of the four journalists who shot photos of Tank Man, the still-unidentified man with two shopping bags who confronted a column of People's Liberation Army tanks rolling into Tienanmen Square...
[read the full post...]
Posted by greg at 7:31 AM

April 1, 2009

Demands On Washington

Tyler Green turned his critical shredder on the National Gallery's new group of Thomas Demand photos depicting his life-sized re-creation of the Oval Office:The result is a photographed stage set of a stage set used by the United States...
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Posted by greg at 10:19 PM

March 16, 2009

Ensure Is George W. Bush's Blue Gap Dress

Like everyone else in the country, I was glued to the screen September 11th, 1998, scrambling to download the massive Independent Counsel's Report, aka the Kenneth Starr Report, from a still-scrawny Internet. I finally printed my copy in time for...
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Posted by greg at 1:42 PM

February 11, 2009

All We Are Is Hope In The Wind

Google Earthworks-meets-Sforzian Backgrounds? This is Jorge Rodriguez Gerada's Expectation, a 650-ton sand painting of Barack Obama on the beach in Barcelona. Here's the site, just next to the Forum de les Cultures. Not only was the mockup done in...
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Posted by greg at 5:07 PM

January 27, 2009

Ah Yes, I Kind Of Remember When

The week before the Inauguration, Errol Morris called the White House photo editors of the major wire services and asked them to choose and discuss the photos "that they believe captured the character of [George W Bush] the man and...
[read the full post...]
Posted by greg at 12:57 PM

January 21, 2009

Sforzian Backlog

I've been collecting a bunch of Last Sforza Posts in my browser tabs for a few weeks now; they just kept coming, but I wasn't in the mood. Then I thought I'd put together some grand summary of the Bush...
[read the full post...]
Posted by greg at 9:34 AM

December 16, 2008

Just Do It?

A spectacular image by Reuters photographer Yiorgos Karahalis of a rioter in Athens. Until Joy Garnett gets around to it, the full-size version at the Big Picture is the best way to see it....
[read the full post...]
Posted by greg at 11:17 AM

November 26, 2008

An Alaskan Place Called Could

"She could be the most natural, visionary poet since William Blake." I would lose the comma; isn't "visionary poet" a job title all its own? [via TMN]...
[read the full post...]
Posted by greg at 8:48 AM

November 20, 2008

The Saddest Photo-Op

a friendless GWB at last week's G20 summit, set to sad music. [via gawker]...
[read the full post...]
Posted by greg at 2:28 PM

November 5, 2008

You Better Hold On, Meet You In Tompkins Square

In 1988, a police riot broke out at Tompkins Square Park in the East Village. Police beat, among others, people defying a 1 AM curfew imposed by Mayor Ed Koch in an attempt to curtail, among other things, late night...
[read the full post...]
Posted by greg at 9:14 PM

Lemme Tell Ya Story 'Bout A Man Named Todd

Palin screenwriters take note: the industrious reporters at Newsweek have spotted you an easy 100 points on your Scene and Dialogue Plausibility Test. Also, bonus shower scene!: "At the GOP convention in St. Paul, Palin was completely unfazed by the...
[read the full post...]
Posted by greg at 4:56 PM

October 30, 2008

Drunk Floridians For Obama

Heh. My friends, this is drunk dialing we can believe in. [macdaddyworld via sullivan]...
[read the full post...]
Posted by greg at 3:55 PM

October 24, 2008

That's Not A Sforzian Background We Can Believe In

Just because you read the syllabus for Sforza 101 doesn't mean you get credit for taking the course. The secret of the human wallpaper backdrop is that it works best if you have either uniformed military or a racially...
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Posted by greg at 6:45 PM

Schoolhouse Rock The Vote

Awesome and funny. Or, I would like it to be funny on November 5th, anyway: [via sullivan]...
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Posted by greg at 1:14 PM

October 22, 2008

Sarah Palin's Shopping Spree Is So September 10th

OK, I started picking at Politico's $150,000 Palin Family shopping spree on Daddy Types. There was an obviously inaccurate claim that the GOP had spent $295 on a sweet ride for Trig Palin at a baby store called Steiniauer &...
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Posted by greg at 4:18 PM

October 20, 2008

McCains For Obama

No one can argue slavery had an upside, but this Wall Street Journal video is about as good as it gets. Some Of McCain's Black Relatives Support Obama [South Florida Times via wonkette]...
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Posted by greg at 9:42 PM

October 16, 2008

"Possible" By Jonathan Hoefler For Artists For Obama

"For as long as I live, I will never forget that in no other country on earth is my story even possible." I just bought Jonathan Hoefler's poster from the Barack Obama store. If you hurry, 4799 more of you...
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Posted by greg at 12:50 AM

October 7, 2008

Bruce Willis Type For President?

Two essays, each interesting and thoughtful on its own, crossed my desk this morning. I think they're inter-related. First from the always spatially aware Geoff Managh on the seemingly irrational landscapes of presidential campaigning:...President Bush had stopped off this morning...
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Posted by greg at 1:00 PM

October 3, 2008

Etsy Sellers For Obama?

2008.10.02 - 538 VP Debate-9, originally uploaded by Brett 538. There are a few folks with Magritte-esque, absurdist posters outside the Vice Presidential debate tonight. Though, "Mo' Monkeys, Mo' Problems" is sweet, I think it unfairly singles out monkeys....
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Posted by greg at 12:32 AM

September 25, 2008

We're All David Lettermans Now

John McCain lied to David Letterman, and Letterman is pissed. John McCain called Letterman personally to cancel his appearance on the show last night, claiming he was rushing right back to Washington to save the economy. Then he went...
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Posted by greg at 7:49 AM

September 5, 2008

A School Called Hope

"This is the place that matters." And this just gets better and better. Walter Reed Middle School served as the backdrop for the presidential candidacy of Democratic congressman Matt Santos--as played by Jimmy Smits on West Wing. West Wing...
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Posted by greg at 2:12 PM

Live By The Sforza, Die By The Sforza?

As a student of Sforzian backdrops, this scenario being discussed here is almost too... and yet... Did the GOP really use: - an image of the main building at Walter Reed - only it's not the Army's Walter Reed...
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Posted by greg at 7:33 AM

September 3, 2008

Sforzando

Laura Bush tells the audience at the GOP Convention that a new life awaits them in the off-world colonies. [image: Damon Winter/NYT. He's got a great one of Fred Thompson, too]...
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Posted by greg at 8:22 AM

September 1, 2008

Pro-Life, Except In The Case Of Decorating

There's no photo credit, but I'm assuming that Gawker scanned this image of Gov. Sarah Palin from an issue of Alaska Interiors. I hope McCain keeps her on for a while, this is awesome....
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Posted by greg at 12:49 PM

August 31, 2008

"Hi, Howya Doin'? Gustav? Is That Swedish?"

Don't mind us, We just need to borrow The Big Board for a minute to take some pictures... ...and to see how Roddick's doing. No, no, don't let us bother you. You just keep looking like you're working." From the...
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Posted by greg at 10:48 PM

August 29, 2008

We're All Americans Now

Arrivederci, Sforza....
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Posted by greg at 1:15 AM

August 23, 2008

The Politico Does Not Permit The Expensing Of Unapproved Hostess Gifts

"The guys from The Politico brought her [my mom, Cindy McCain] flowers, which I still think is the most adorable thing ever, so thank you. I thought it was so cute that they decided to bring my mom flowers,...
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Posted by greg at 11:51 AM

August 15, 2008

Move Along, Nothing Sforza To See Here

I haven't been paying too close attention to the imagery of the current presidential campaign, but looked at through a Sforzian lens, the McCain campaign stop is mind-bogglingly bad news. The photographs are from McCain's daughter Meghan's campaign blog which,...
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Posted by greg at 9:37 PM

July 10, 2008

Opening Ceremonies

Wow, just wow. Paramilitaries forming the five rings and [apparently] performing the haka? Competitive hurdle-sawing? SWAT teams on Segways?? From the photos of Arirang-style military and police parades staged in cities around the country in advance of the Olympics,...
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Posted by greg at 4:06 PM

May 1, 2008

Eli Manning, The Manchurian Sforzian Backdrop

The hand that picks the nose shakes the hand that rules the world. For another seven months. [ap via wonkette]...
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Posted by greg at 4:12 PM

March 18, 2008

Wow. "The Selling Of The War" on VPRO

A couple of months ago, I was contacted by producers from Backlight, an investigative documentary TV series on the Dutch public broadcaster VPRO. They were trying to locate and interview Scott Sforza for a program set for the 5th anniversary...
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Posted by greg at 10:57 PM

February 29, 2008

Faster, Bulletin Kill Kill!

Alright, does anyone have a screenshot of the victim? Apparently, the AP erroneously reported at 6:35EST that Bush resigned over, of all things, plagiarism. It's like getting Capone for tax evasion. whoa, it's 2 min, later, and it gets even...
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Posted by greg at 7:50 PM

December 20, 2007

1600 For Men: Presidential Prestige Bath Products For Men

There's nothing I can say that isn't already said by the licensee:We are pleased to introduce you to 1600 for Men®- Formulated with the finest of ingredients including naturally derived botanicals and skin enriching vitamins. 1600 for Men™ is...
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Posted by greg at 9:59 PM

August 21, 2007

Magic: Teller Like It Is

At a recent conference talk on magic given in Las Vegas, Teller [the quiet one] gave the most amazing definition of magic I wish I'd heard before writing about Scott Sforza for Cabinet Magazine's magic issue:[Magic is] the theatrical linking...
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Posted by greg at 6:43 PM

July 22, 2007

Mitt Romney Dodges Questions About Whitney, Dia, Met Expansion

Good to see he's taking a brave stand against the one museum that isn't contemplating opening an annex on the west side of Manhattan, though. You stay strong, Mitt. [image and scoop: tmz.com, story and aide's inane excuse for...
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Posted by greg at 7:38 AM

July 21, 2007

Comrades, Join Me In A Relentless Exposure Of Michelangelo Antonioni's Despicable Tricks!

I only discovered the Chinese government's published evisceration of Michelangelo Antonioni's 1972 documentary Chung Kuo - Cina after I thought I'd finished my Cabinet article on Scott Sforza. Jonathan wondered if Susan Sontag's On Photography might have a relevant...
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Posted by greg at 11:06 PM

July 19, 2007

Cabinet 26: "Perspective Correction"

Can I just say, I've reached a point in my life where I don't know what's left to accomplish? I mean, how can I top the thrill of getting to write for Cabinet Magazine? I just don't know. I've had...
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Posted by greg at 11:15 PM

April 19, 2007

We Are All Sforzians Now

Blogging software :: printing press Pillow case :: digitally printed vinyl Sforzian Backdrops elaborately arranged by White House advance team. Wow. [via nyt]...
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Posted by greg at 6:11 PM

April 10, 2007

Sforza Caption Contest?

Even though I know that the official White House photographers work inside the bubble, and hence, can often shoot around and through the Sforzian setups that so masterfully entrap their nominally independent wire service colleagues, it always floors me...
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Posted by greg at 9:43 PM

April 5, 2007

Signs That Sforza Has Left The Building

1. When the backdrop to a GWB speech about Iraq war funding is literally Dick Cheney lurking in the bushes. [via towleroad]...
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Posted by greg at 12:27 AM

March 16, 2007

Everything I Need To Know About Marketing, I Learned In Infinite Jest

Have I been reading too much David Foster Wallace, or would these Brazilian army riot shields make awesome venues for the right advertiser? [image via knuttz.net]...
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Posted by greg at 7:56 PM

March 3, 2007

We're Sforza Like That

Come sparando pesci in un barilotto. Remember September 10th! # # # Before he was the Mayor of 9/11, he was the Mayor of New York City....
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Posted by greg at 11:59 AM

October 22, 2006

Paul Fusco's "Bitter Fruit": Photos Of American Soldiers' Funerals, 2004-present

Bronx, NY, 2004, Funeral service for Sgt. Luis Moreno Paul Fusco began photographing the funerals of American soldiers killed in Iraq in 2004 as a "personal protest against government attempts to downplay the costs of war." It's not the...
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Posted by greg at 9:06 PM

Bush Campaigns Cruises For NASCAR Daddies?

If liberal bloggers start seeing The Gay Conspiracy everywhere, too, does that count as progress? Because that's the prevailing interpretation on Americablog for the Sforzian Backdrop of this Stephanopoulos-Bush interview [hot George-on-George action?]. That rainbow flag-looking thing hovering over...
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Posted by greg at 8:53 PM

October 11, 2006

If Sforza Ran The CPA...

From very early on, the media's real problem in Iraq was not covering the success stories even when they were happening right in front of their faces. Take this glowing example from the heady, hopeful days of the Coalition...
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Posted by greg at 12:56 PM

October 7, 2006

Amazing: Sforzian Backdrop-Meets-Human Shield

Tom Reynolds, chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee ignored one of the cardinal rules of stage performance: never appear with animals or small children. I don't know what Reynolds was saying; I couldn't stop watching the Sforzian Backdrop...
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Posted by greg at 10:36 AM

October 2, 2006

Swatting At Flies

Ever since it was first revealed by, I believe, then-National Security Advisor Condoleeza Rice during the 9/11 Commission hearings, I've been bugged [no pun] by Bush's reaction to Osama Bin Laden and Al Qaeda's threat, that he was "tired of...
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Posted by greg at 1:34 PM

September 13, 2006

Where's Scott Sforza when you need him?

There is actually discussion online that this photo has been Photoshopped and that GWB didn't actually step on the flag during a photo-op visit to a September 11th memorial near the WTC Site. Sorry, it's very real. Reuters photos...
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Posted by greg at 5:15 PM

September 9, 2006

Standing On The Shoulders Of Giants

Or in Larry Silverstein's case, Fumihiko Maki. [ap/yahoo via gawker]...
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Posted by greg at 3:11 PM

August 21, 2006

But He'll-- He'll See The Big Board!

I remember reading some analysis of mob phonetapping transcripts, and the gangsters were constantly preoccupied with how closely they ressembled movie Mafiosi like The Godfather. The authenticity of Coppola's creation had usurped the once-authentic originals who had inspired him...
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Posted by greg at 3:56 PM

August 2, 2006

Sforza In Da House!

John McKinnon reports in the Wall Street Journal that the White House Press Room is getting a studio-sized makeover, including direct feed video capability and a video wall [as seen here at U2's Zoo TV tour]:"Both the planned video...
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Posted by greg at 6:38 PM

July 13, 2006

Holy Crap, This Is All The NYT Photo Editor Has To Say About Sforza?

Looks like it's Michele McNally, deputy photo editor for the New York Times' turn to pooh-pooh reader questions this week:Q. As the Times has reported on one occasion, the Bush administration has been singularly aggressive in shaping and staging angles...
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Posted by greg at 10:29 PM

July 11, 2006

The Education Of A Sforza Critic

Unbelievable. Aided only a 40-oz., and using only a reference-letter-seeking grad student as a nervous sounding board, Steven Heller turns out 5,000 words of derision for the "lackluster," "atrocious" design of Sforzian Backdrops ["all the subtlety of a PowerPoint presentation...
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Posted by greg at 2:19 PM

June 29, 2006

John Cassavettes Punching Ronald Reagan

Wow, can you imagine Ronald Reagan as a bad guy? Here he is in The Killers getting punched by one of his henchmen, played by John Cassavettes. I-- wow. Ronald Reagan John Cassavetes Duel [youtube via wmfublog via rw]...
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Posted by greg at 9:51 PM

June 10, 2006

Ah, Nobody Does Sforza Like The British

It just takes one or two photos to remind you that long before there was a Scott Sforza, the British monarchy was using elaborately staged pomp and ceremony to bedazzle its subjects and keep them line. On another note,...
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Posted by greg at 1:30 PM

June 8, 2006

Zarqawi Portrait Sets Record Price For Photography

Wow, if there was any doubt about where the contemporary art market is going, they were dispelled this morning at Christie's Baghdad, where the US Government paid a record-setting $286 billion--plus $240 for framing--for this portrait of the dead...
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Posted by greg at 12:17 PM

June 2, 2006

The World Trade Center According To Garp

"D.C. at Low Risk of Attack, Federal Agency Says" - headline on the front page of today's print edition of the Washington Post, an article about why cutting DHS funds to DC and NYC by 40% is just fine....
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Posted by greg at 3:04 PM

May 26, 2006

Script Notes From WHP

What we need in this scene is a very dramatic showdown over separation of powers. Perhaps we could all pretend to argue amongst ourselves over some picayune case, preferably one that involves a corrupt Louisiana Democrat. That way, not only...
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Posted by greg at 10:34 PM

May 10, 2006

Oh MyGOP, The iPod For Special Republicans

I realized when I grabbed this screenshot, I didn't capture the actual GOP disclaimer, which disclaims any affiliation between the Republican National Committee and Apple Computer. Still, given how hard it was to believe that such a thing as...
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Posted by greg at 2:47 AM

May 1, 2006

Speaking Truthiness To Power

I don't know what was more hilarious: Stephen Colbert's speech at the White House Correspondents' Dinner, or the not-at-all-amused faces on some of the folks in the crowd at his unflinching criticism, which was delivered, of course, wrapped in Colbert's...
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Posted by greg at 12:03 PM

Sforza Is Clearly NOT In The House

The House of Representatives, that is. Here is a long lens snap of Republican House Speaker Dennis Hastert climbing out of the hydrogen-powered minivan he'd just appeared in at a "we feel your gas prices pain" photo-op--and into his...
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Posted by greg at 11:34 AM

April 21, 2006

Hu-haha: The Politics Of Camera Angles

When I heard the NPR report of all the pomp and ceremony and symbolism on display during Chinese President Hu Jintao's visit to the White House yesterday, I expected the news service photos to show a classic Sforzian set, with...
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Posted by greg at 10:22 AM

March 14, 2006

Good Evening, Mr & Mrs Green Zone, And To All The Ships At Sea

Do I have readers in the Green Zone? Did somebody somewhere write a memo? Because Saddam's crib used to be white, and now it's painted brown. [image: ap/bob strong via yahoo] Previously: American Dream: Astroturf and a White Picket...
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Posted by greg at 1:30 AM

March 4, 2006

New Dehli, New Orleans, They're Both Foreign, Right?

Josh Marshall gets in on the Sforzian Backdrop fun by noticing the similarities between GWB's post-Katrina speech in Jackson Square, and his nighttime speech to invited guests only at the zoo in New Delhi. Here's the AP's Gerald Herbert's...
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Posted by greg at 8:44 AM

February 16, 2006

Life According To Comedy Central

1) That series of Maxwell House commercials featuring badlibs of Madness's "Our House"? HOW DESPERATELY WRONG IS THAT? Someone in Madness's family better need some super-expensive operations that require maximum sellout. Otherwise, they need to be taken to the woodshed....
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Posted by greg at 11:30 AM

February 14, 2006

CNN Is The New Blog

It hit me again during the Super Bowl: the perpetual motion, 3D overkill design language of on-air TV graphics is in serious need of rethinking. Sundance Channel did something about it, and now CNN International has, too. It'll be interesting...
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Posted by greg at 10:50 AM

January 31, 2006

Fool Me Once, Shame On.. Fool Me.. Twice We...Won't Be Fooled Again

Unless this was somehow the on-message Backdrop for the day. Let's go to the tape. Look at this wider shot, where the pre-existing monitors have been used for the Backdrop. Somehow, this was intentional. Maybe that capuccino-skinned jester was...
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Posted by greg at 7:48 AM

January 30, 2006

WH Beat Photogs Upset At Staged Photographs They Don't Take

Stockholm Syndrome? Job security? The White House News Photographers Association was so worried about the sharp increase of staged photographs, they undertook a study and filed a complaint about it with White House Productions. Don't get them wrong; they're not...
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Posted by greg at 8:44 AM

January 25, 2006

It's All About The Benjamins, Baby

Yesterday Attorney General Alberto Gonzales was shooting some b-roll at Georgetown Law for this week's WH production [working title, according to the AP: "Bush to Visit NSA for Pep Talk"], but it looks like they ran into some problems...
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Posted by greg at 10:35 AM

Gentlemen, You Can't Threaten In Here, This Is The Threat Operations Center!

Gotta admit, the rather mundane, unimpressive visuals of the NSA's Threat Operations Center are a boost to the secretive agency's credibility. The place looks like utilitarian Government, right down to the bald-ponytailed sysadmin on the front row. The TOC...
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Posted by greg at 9:43 AM

January 23, 2006

The American Dream: Astroturf And A White Picket Fence

Wow, we have entered the Sforzian Baroque period. A GWB "townhall-style meeting" at a moving company in Sterling, VA took place on one of the most soundstage-like sets we've seen in a while. These screened supporter-packed events were very popular...
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Posted by greg at 5:41 AM

January 9, 2006

Kris or Julie? Which Angel Is John McCain?

Because it matters FAR more than you know. You have to be a certain age to remember the shock and confusion of 1977. That was when, just as Farrah postermania had crested, America turned on the TV one Wednesday night,...
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Posted by greg at 8:46 AM

December 2, 2005

Mission Accomplished, Indeed

Just when you [and by "you," I mean "Scott Sforza"] think it's been a rough month or two, and you're reduced to staging photo ops in a yurt on the backlot of Far and Away, you wake up and...
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Posted by greg at 7:39 AM

November 21, 2005

[Mandate of] Heavens To Murgatroid

White House Productions ordered up this backdrop for use at GWB's hotel press conference. As the camera angle in the BBC screenshot above shows, the "China" & "Beijing" characters are perfectly placed to flank GWB's talking head (in the TV...
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Posted by greg at 10:43 AM

October 22, 2005

And Nancy Swats His Pesky Little Hand Away

In his efforts to duplicate Ronald Reagan's political career, he forgot one crucial lesson: watch your back around Nancy. Here's a paragraph from Elizabeth Bumiller's NYT story, "At California Ceremony, Bush Reaches for Reagan Mantle":Laura Bush and Nancy Reagan...
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Posted by greg at 10:06 AM

October 14, 2005

Get A Grip

You can fake the accent, you can fake the peppy talks with the troops [oh, actually, you can't fake those anymore, sorry], and when it's off-camera, you can fake being a rancher. But what you can't fake, turns out, is...
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Posted by greg at 11:26 AM

September 24, 2005

Neither Wind, Nor Rain, Nor Dark Of Night

He can orchestrate his star to land on the deck of an aircraft carrier--at magic hour--while never letting San Diego in the shot, even though it was just off the port bow. He can dispatch a barebones crew with a...
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Posted by greg at 10:37 AM

September 16, 2005

Ooh, What A Little Klieglight Can Do

[images: reuters/larry downing via yahoo; whitehouse.gov] Scott Sforza: I'm gonna put these giant spotlights here in New Orleans, just like I did with the Statue of Liberty on 9/11/02, and if you think the next three years won't be...
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Posted by greg at 11:32 AM

September 14, 2005

Let Free Some Rain!

George Bush asks Condi Rice for permission to pee, plus zoomed back version and on flickr [reuters/yahoo via waxy]...
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Posted by greg at 8:22 AM

September 7, 2005

Sforza Shooting Katrina On A Closed Set

As with any big feature production, studio publicists are compelled by a primal instinct for the preservation of their own power to attempt to control any and all information coming from the setAt first the evidence was scattered and anecdotal....
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Posted by greg at 10:21 AM

September 5, 2005

Maybe Scott Sforza Should Be Running FEMA

GWB: 'Only you Republicans get to see these here 6-day-old maps.' Wes Anderson did it with Bottle Rocket, and it's since become a classic indie scenario: you shoot the short in order to get funding for the feature. Turns out...
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Posted by greg at 7:39 AM

WH Heathers Give LA Gov The Katrina Treatment

Bush went to Louisiana again today to shoot some more footage of grateful evacuees. Governor Kathleen Blanco traveled with him, although she had only first heard about the trip from reporters. Seems no one from Washington bothered to coordinate the...
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Posted by greg at 6:35 AM

July 5, 2005

"I Call It An 'Ownership Society Skirt'"

At least in public, anyway....
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Posted by greg at 12:18 PM

July 1, 2005

Who Has Final Cut At The Lincoln Memorial?

About that 8-minute short subject documentary showing at the Lincoln Memorial, the one about all the people who use "America's Soapbox" to protest in support of their causes? Well, the Religious Right screened the first cut, and they loved it,...
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Posted by greg at 1:04 AM

June 11, 2005

"Oh Sure. And We Got Khaki Day, Camo Day, Not Enough Armor Day, IED-Day, Did I Mention Khaki Day?"

From the imagemaking insurgency at the Associated Press: Army Aims to Catch Up on Recruits in Summer [wp, img jamie roper, ap]...
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Posted by greg at 11:05 AM

January 15, 2005

Sforza vs. Toyota on "The Youth Movement"

Don't quite know what to make of this: For a town-hall-style pitch for phasing out Social Security, G. W. Bush's hand-selected audience included Josh Wright, a representative of "the youth movement," who is also a Utah dairy farmer (and son...
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Posted by greg at 8:28 AM

December 17, 2004

Bush: There's No 'I' In Social Security

Or 'U', for that matter. Or Anybody. And after Scott McClellan gets through explaining, America will think we're the ones who've been misspelling 'Challanges' all these years. [thanks, Tyler] Bush's Social Security Phase Out Summit [Yahoo News] Related: I...
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Posted by greg at 9:36 AM

December 8, 2004

Your Homework For The Day

I'm a bit crazy with an offline deadline, so I'll just give you your assignment: Starting with the prospect that wax does not, in fact, melt when submerged in the fiery pits of hell for all eternity by a wrathful...
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Posted by greg at 11:16 AM

December 5, 2004

I See Dead People

Bush has been haunted by the Ghost of Churchill before he went to Canada. Seriously, though, is there some kind of running bet among the wireservice photographers, whoever discovers the exact shot Scott Sforza has designed for them first,...
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Posted by greg at 10:37 AM

November 2, 2004

If you build it, maybe they'll think it's a barn

Scott, you got me again. I first marveled at photos of this event: "Day-um, Sforza's advance people got in there and repainted that fine barn with that rustic typeface. And here, I thought the entire state had been turned...
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Posted by greg at 9:39 AM

November 1, 2004

Dear Republicans, Aloha! Wish U Were Here! Love, Scott Sforza

Whenever they go to a foreign country, the Bush-Cheney people like to show respect for the quaint local culture, and Hawaii is no different. Dressing the natives in their colorful local garb and dressing the stage with indigenous plantlife? That's...
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Posted by greg at 8:56 AM

October 31, 2004

October 28, 2004

'Sforza' Now Spelled With A Ctrl-V

Ah, the end of October. When Bush's multiple obfuscatory attempts to disown a Sforzian Background-related scandal change faster than the autumn leaves. Last year this time it was "Mission Accomplished." This year, well: The Bush-Cheney campaign's final TV ad, aptly...
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Posted by greg at 11:57 AM

October 27, 2004

And Fox News lose a sweet urban market? Don't scare us like that, Sean

[Mr. President,] Is it possibleis it a reality that we could turn on our television sets one dayFox News Channel I hopeand find out that America isthat a nuclear weapon has gone off herethat a biological agent has been released...
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Posted by greg at 11:55 AM

The Architect of The Marshall Mathers Plan

This summer, GNN director Ian Inaba had come up with a concept for a music video that could get young voters out to the polls, when he found out Eminem was working on a song to do the same...
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Posted by greg at 1:48 AM

October 26, 2004

I'm A Registered Republican, And I'm Voting For Kerry

Buy me a drink some time, and I'll tell you the long story about why I'm a registered Republican. But not right now. My first film was set in November 2001, the period when New Yorkers, when Americans were still...
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Posted by greg at 11:44 AM

October 25, 2004

Switch II: Bush Voters For Kerry

Errol Morris's series of John Kerry ads are powerful precisely because they don't use any of the tactics--treacly hagiography, deceitful misrepresentations, fear-baiting, or mudslinging--that are the mainstay of politician-produced political ads. He interviewed hundreds of people who voted for Bush...
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Posted by greg at 10:14 AM

October 18, 2004

Am I Boogin' Ya? I Don't Mean To Boog Ya

Brilliant remix of George W Bush singing U2's Sunday Bloody Sunday [via fimoculous]...
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Posted by greg at 6:22 AM

October 7, 2004

RNC Highlight Reel

Don't know the editor, but the actors are familiar, and the script, we all know it by heart now ("September 11th, Saddam Hussein, very dangerous, global terrorism"). BoingBoing points to a video that distills the 4-day message of last month's...
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Posted by greg at 1:43 AM

October 5, 2004

Village Voice: It's The Split Screen, Stupid

Even the weekly, leftwing, activist, downtown media (owned by a religious conservative, suburban billionaire) said the George Bush media masterminds flubbed the debate last week. Late to close, but still wanting to kick the man when he's down, the Village...
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Posted by greg at 4:06 AM

September 5, 2004

Scott Sforza's The Passion

Cross? Check. Jew? Check. Gavel? Check. via NYT "President Bush's chief political strategist, Karl Rove, told CNN he did not think the podium's decorative woodwork looked like a cross. "'My God, where do they come up with this stuff?'...
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Posted by greg at 5:20 AM

September 2, 2004

How Rosecrans Baldwin Would Protest at The Republican Convention

I dunno, but from readin' his notes, I have to guess it'd be a helluva lot smarter 'n funnier than what anyone else's doin': "...Sony has apparently sponsored the protests. Everyone has a video camera, and every seconds worth recording....
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Posted by greg at 11:21 AM

Triumph of the W.

So you're saying, if you suspend habeas corpus and pre-emptively arrest hundreds of pedestrians, I'll be able to drive my Mercedes [sic] to the Upper East Side from the Holland Tunnel in 10 minutes every day? I have to confess,...
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Posted by greg at 9:23 AM

August 31, 2004

Yeah, I DO see a family resemblance

Stephen Baldwin: "Stephen Baldwin doesnt feel that he has this mission to make Christianity cool...God made me [Stephen Baldwin] cool so that the youth culture would look up to me." NY Mag: We hear youre going to the Bush twins...
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Posted by greg at 9:15 AM

August 14, 2004

How ____ would protest at the Republican Convention

Dale Peck, writer/Hatchet man: will periodically leave Soho House to "commit civil disobedience as many times as possible." [via Gothamist] Maer Roshan, magazine non-launcher/editor: will bombard and disorient conventiongoers with daily rundowns on the best plastic surgeons and spa treatments...
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Posted by greg at 9:46 AM

The Lord Spins in Mysterious Ways

So which way does this go? I mean, I'm a pretty religious guy from a religious, hurricane-prone state, and I can't figure it out: Does getting pounded by two history-making hurricanes mean God is displeased and punishing Bush and his...
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Posted by greg at 9:05 AM

August 4, 2004

How Billy Baldwin would protest at the Republican Convention

from an ongoing series: If his behavior on my flight to Ozaka is any indication, Billy will dress like a 40-year old cop trying to go undercover at a high school. He will sport long, greasy hair, with a ponytail...
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Posted by greg at 2:26 AM

July 29, 2004

Pakistan: 'If you need me, I'll be in my trailer'

Steve Martin said it best: it's all in the ti-MING. ti...MINGming. It's always risky shooting with locally cast talent. But after five tense days, the White House screening room erupted in fits of backslapping and high fives as the rushes...
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Posted by greg at 5:36 AM

July 8, 2004

White House Production Notes: Summer Blockbuster Edition

From: Scott Sforza, Head of Production, White House Studios To: Karl Rove, CEO, RE: Summer Schedule As requested, sir, an update on this summer's production/release schedule. It's filling out quite nicely, and there's no doubt in anyone's mind it'll go...
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Posted by greg at 10:02 AM

July 2, 2004

White House:: Happy Days, State Dept:: Joanie Loves Cha-Chi

This is so beyond jumping the shark. At least the shark was jumped on the main show. Colin Powell singing YMCA in Jakarta (he was the construction worker.) is the political equivalent of a bitter, aging Erin Moran, who--realizing her...
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Posted by greg at 11:54 AM

June 25, 2004

GWB's Black Box Soundstage

On Monday, the Bush-Cheney show had (yet another) location shoot in Ohio. Exec Prod. Karl Rove is guarding the script closer than a CIA agent's identity, it appeared to be (yet another) Bush Liking Black People scene. The production...
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Posted by greg at 1:39 AM

June 22, 2004

The W is for WTF?

"W Ketchup would like to thank President Reagan for his selfless service to this nation. "Reagan won the Cold War, let private enterprise flourish, and most of all made Americans proud to be Americans again... "You dont support Democrats. Why...
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Posted by greg at 7:55 AM

June 6, 2004

Credit Where Credit is Due

Reagan hits his last mark, stumping for the Bush/Cheney campaign Love him or hate him, you've gotta give Karl Rove credit for pulling the plug at the optimal time. He manages 1) to divert attention from whatever new Bush...
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Posted by greg at 11:58 AM

April 10, 2004

Hook, Line and Sinker

I usually confine my viewing of OLN, the Outdoor Life Network, to pen-to-pen coverage of the Professional Bull Riders Tour. But then, like a shiny object dancing before me, on-the-set production details for OLN's Fishing With Roland Martin appeared on...
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Posted by greg at 11:53 AM

February 16, 2004

Sforzian Background of The Century of The Week

It's not political theater, even political amphitheater. It's beyond political grandstanding, even though there are grandstands in the picture. It's the political imagemaking equivalent of the chariot race in Ben Hur: Air Force One taking off next to Daytona...
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Posted by greg at 2:43 AM

February 5, 2004

My Worlds Collide: Scott Sforza Discovers Shipping Containers

No run-of-the-mill PowerPoint banners in South Carolina. No, the money shot of White House Productions' primary mitigation show was clearly the Coast Guard cutter, positioned behind Bush's podium. Forget the boat, though, and go wide. Bush is addressing his...
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Posted by greg at 11:46 AM

February 3, 2004

Calling Scott Sforza

To protest Bush's 2005 budget, the party of Liberal Hollywood ignores the dark art of image manipulation (cf. White House Productions' favorites, PowerPoint wallpaper and carefully positioned crowds of (skin)color-coordinated soldiers) in favor of some intern's clip art. Let's...
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Posted by greg at 10:59 AM

January 15, 2004

The Political Gospel, According to Reuters

Just a quick Sforzian note of these two Reuters photos, which were side by side on a Yahoo News page this morning: Related: Producer Scott Sforza, who's built a Potemkin village centered around the White House....
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Posted by greg at 12:39 PM

December 17, 2003

More On Dependent Filmmaking, or Barney Cam II: White House Boogaloo

[via Gothamist] Jimmy Orr, the Choire Sicha to George Bush's Nick Denton, has posted his new short film, Barney Cam II: Barney Reloaded, on his weblog, whitehouse.gov. Elizabeth Bumiller, the Times' specialist on the dependent film industry, gives it a...
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Posted by greg at 1:29 AM

November 9, 2003

The Reagan Movie I want to see

Over at GreenCine, David puts the Reagan TV movie in perspective; it doesn't sound like it's worth going to the mat for. And instead of reading the 213-page script, I just rebought Joan Didion's NYRB article, The Lion King, and...
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Posted by greg at 1:10 AM

October 31, 2003

Sforzian Backstabbing

Since before Elizabeth Bumiller came up with the term for the Times, I was a fan of Sforzian Backgrounds, the news-manipulating slogans created by Scott Sforza, a key member of the White House's advance scenery and production team, for...
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Posted by greg at 8:27 AM

July 17, 2003

After the '04 Republican Convention, we'll be calling them Patakian Backdrops

White House stage manager Scott Sforza better enjoy the attention while it lasts; when the Republican convention rolls into Manhattan next September, er, 1th, they'll be stumping in front of a George Pataki-crafted backdrop, construction of the foundations of the...
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Posted by greg at 8:18 AM

July 11, 2003

Sforzian Backdrops: Africa

While looking through Yahoo News for a linkable photo of those elephants protesting George Bush's abstinence-driven AIDS program funding, I was happy to find that African Bush has the same production design team as White House Bush and Crawford...
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Posted by greg at 3:40 AM

May 16, 2003

White House Stagecraft: Will this be on the DVD?

Shoot the conference title from this preset camera position; state seal and flowing flag when allowed to shoot head-on. images:whitehouse.gov Sforzian Backgrounds. So that's what they're called. At least that's what Elizabeth Bumiller's NYT article calls those glib slogan-filled,...
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Posted by greg at 10:30 AM