Yesterday I went to the Baltimore Museum of Art to see the John Waters exhibit called Indecent Exposure. I really enjoyed it. I discovered John Waters in college when I first saw Desperate Living. It totally blew my mind. Since then, I’ve watched most of his filmography, but Desperate remains my favorite.
Indecent Exposure made me laugh out loud a number of times. The pieces are weird and enjoyable. Whether it is magazine covers addressed to unlikely subscribers (ie Barbara Bush getting Jet magazine), a baby stroller emblazed with sex club logos, children reading the script of Pink Flamingoes, or a collage of old gay erotica novels that contain the word chicken (Poultry) everything made me happy. I laughed out loud a lot. Waters narrates that audio guide which makes it all the more fantastic.
The thing I like about Waters is that his art calls us all out for being too serious. The world is a wacky, vulgar, and nonsensical place. It’s good to laugh at ourselves and enjoy our time on this planet. One piece is 308 notecards in which he kept his daily to-do list. He saved them all put them together like a quilt. I noticed a recurring 10 digit number and decided to call it. I hung up when it went to voicemail, but the voice sounded like John Waters. I think I called his phone. #crazy
You may think he is vulgar, but vulgarity is truly in the eyes of the beholder. On my drive to Baltimore yesterday, I listened to Jeremy Scahill’s episode on George HW Bush. Americans falling over one another to praise George HW Bush, a man who’s responsible for an uncountable number of deaths, is far more revolting than the John Water’s piece called 12 Assholes and a Dirty Foot. Indeed, it is 12 photos of rectums and a foot.
But hey, that’s me.