The Harvest

Each summer in state capitals around America farmers and entertainers come together to thrill and amuse a grateful public. In many, the central attraction has become sculptures made entirely out of butter depicting farm scenes, rural life and popular culture. In these temporary spectacles Americans see themselves reflected and celebrated.

In November 2008, America elected its first black president. Spirits rose and many voters allowed their expectations to soar to biblical levels, while others seethed in barely concealed contempt. Barack Obama has, almost inevitably, disappointed many of his supporters and has continued to be reviled by those naysayers who have taken to calling him a Socialist, a Marxist, and a Fascist, and have even questioned his very nationality, concealing, perhaps, other motives.

Industry of the Ordinary created a portrait of the President at the time of his impending re-election campaign, sculpting his likeness in butter and transporting him around his adopted hometown of Chicago.

This sculpture of Obama was moved atop a wheeled platform, inside a cooled glass-fronted container, through the streets of the city in the run up to, and aftermath of, the election. A camera crew accompanied it on its way and documented the reactions of the public, creating a portrait of a culture in transition.

The piece began on Friday October 26 2012 at noon at 842 W Lake Street, Chicago, IL 60607 and continued for several hours until it was delivered to the Chicago Cultural Center in the late afternoon, to become part of the Industry of the Ordinary: Sic Transit Gloria Mundi exhibition.

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