EVEN WHEN I SQUINT I STILL SEE THE SAME
is a multimedia artwork that turns a critical eye on American Democracy and how the 2016 Republican presidential campaign transformed a seemingly banal object, the red baseball cap, into a controversial and provocative symbol.
The work exists as a sculpture, 50 unique red hats, and a photo/video art intervention. The photo is a landscape portrait featuring 50 diverse humans, residents of Queens, New York wearing each of the hats. Each person represents a transformation of the Make America Great Again symbol back to its original banality.
WHAT IS A HOMOGLYPH?
A homoglyph is a written character that appears similar to another, however its meaning is very different than the character to which it is similar. Each of the hats in the project are printed with homoglyphs of the phrase: Make America Great Again
Because some of the characters in the phrase are homoglyphs, none of the perceived words are real. These "words" do not contain literal meaning; we interpret meaning through subjective awareness of and emotional response to current events.
The homoglyphs seen on each of the 50 hats were chosen from a list of over 500,000 combinations generated by a computer. By selecting 50 from the total quantity I wanted the act of selection—50 from 500,000—to be a purely aesthetic exercise in utility. In this way, choosing a phrase becomes analogous to choosing an apple from a pile in the fruit stand.
Images from public intervention
Very special thanks to the photo production team!
Angeline Gragasin - Producer
Mojo Lorwin - Production Assistant