Monument As Metaphor

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Posted by Assyrian Enema from ( on Tuesday, January 14, 2003 at 8:53PM :

Just returned from the foundry in Monterey. Went there witha pal to see about some additional work on a piece he carved. I wish we weren't cannibals and I could tell you more, except to say the guy is a medical person who does beautiful wood carving, which in this case, was cast into bronze.

Anyway, while we there we saw, once again, the Shumirum Monument...standing aginst the wall in a corner, her lioness nearby. In foundries we do the most godawful things to sculpture in the process of finishing them. You might have to whack Abe Lincoln several times in the head with a sledge hammer to get his parts together so they can be welded. We don't see them as sculptures of people...just bronze that has to be whanged and pressed and cut and welded.

I've seen terrible liberties taken with all sorts of great people...and you wouldn't believe what we've done with any number of Christs.

So it's not disturbing for us when we shove a bronze in a corner and put garbage cans around it, drape ropes and chains over it...even rest a hat or a coat against some part of it. That's because we're used to people following through...we know the piece will be picked up, rescued, and placed where it's supposed to go.

But in this case, it makes for an interesting commentary...sort of like the pictures Jeff and Stella took in Chicago, at the Wurld Hindquarters of the AUA...the "Bordello of Assyria" up there on Clark St where John Nimrod plays Madam and Homer Ashurian makes cow eyes. Those shots of the Assyrian Kings' portraits in the basement on old packing crates...boxes of raisins and such stacked in front of them...tell a marvellous story about us...street theater for a nayshun of streetwalkers.

I didn't have my camera with me or I would have put a shot here of the Shumirum. So neglected...and yet still noble, strong, proud...even defiant, and very very UN-Christian. Four garbage cans surround her, an honor guard befitting Assyrian pride.

Several individuals gave over $90,000...and Helen gave $120,000...and Nimrod didn't give a penny...yet he determines Her fate, and is very happy to have such power. She stands there in a foundry in Monterey because of him, and because of Jackie Bejan. They will blame me...but that hardly makes any sense.

It's a powerful image taken altogether...from its very inception in a studio in Portugal where the lioness was made...sent by ship through the Panama Canal to Oakland California...then up to St Helena for completion...and after 24 years of work, six of them spent in storage...she stands there waiting...for what I don't know.

With so little left to do to complete the project...why have we stalled? Because of our leadershit...that's why...and because people get the shit they deserve...the shit they ask for.

In Nimrod and Bejan we have extremely well packaged shit...but the real thing nonetheless. Nimrod wraps himself in the mantle of SenaTOR and politician...elder statesman etc. And Jackie wraps her's in wool suits and jewels and sets it down on leather. But shit is any other name, it still stinks.

-- Assyrian Enema
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