Friday, September 09, 2005
skipping around: Yesterday's drive from Tusla to St. Louis included stops here and here. And, despite our better judgement, here, near Carthage, MO. Your jaw has not truly hung open until it has hung open in front of, stained-glass windows, mock-Sistine ceilings, and large, multiple-figure, stone statues and fountains, in which every single figure save Jesus is portrayed as a tiny adorable child in the familiar no-nose manner of these immensely popular porcelain figurines. Kitsch, one forgets (though this was a main point of Greenberg's), is typically utterly sincere -- and thus, mere mockery is not really a tenable response, not in the face of the room decidated to the deceased relatives of Precious Moments collectors, and to artist Sam Butcher's late son, who died in a car accident in 1990. What is worrisome is that some future culture will unearth all this, long after we and our cities are all dust, and reconstruct American spirituality inaccurately. Very slightly inaccurately.