In the 2014 GLAMFA Art Exhibit, I captured a photo of the artwork done by April Bey, a current student at California State University, Northridge. This piece quickly captured my attention because of the infamous and widely popular “Keep Calm” meme that has been circulating around pop-culture for some time. However, after looking more closely at the piece and doing some research, I was surprised to discover that this piece is actually a stand against modern culture and is meant to depict the modern”trash culture”, as April describes it, in this digital age. I find it ironic that what caught my attention to this stand-against-pop-culture piece in the first place was the use of the pop-culture “Keep Calm” meme. The piece depicts Beyonce, Kerry Washington, Miley Cyrus, and Lena Dunham, four widely known icons adored by millions, and is captioned by a single question, “Who Do You Worship?”. According to April, modern culture, or “trash”, clogs the digital arteries of communication and casts a tarnished patina of filth on it, she also claims that human beings are finding it easy to bond over the mutual misconduct. I agree, that in this digital age people are finding it a little too easy to worship these icons, especially as a whole, but whether or not these icons are “trash”, however, is debatable. I believe that what some critics label as “trash” is subjective and that what is “trash” to one person might not be “trash” to another. I do agree however, that in this digital age, people are being deluded on what is truly important. People such as Beyonce and Miley Cyrus are being widely broadcasted amongst our society, and an unnecessary amount of cultural emphasis is being placed on these icons. This, I believe, is what is making our modern culture “trash”, and not the people themselves. The amount of attention these icons are getting is ridiculous, and it is deterring us from what is truly important. One hundred years from now, I do not want the most important thing history remembers about our generation to be Miley Cyrus twerking.
WHO DO YOU WORKSHIP BY APRIL BEY