Suh invite us to rethink the relationship between structure and agency, and in a novel way that neither romanticises the disadvantaged position of the subjects of capitalism nor absolutises the structure that these same subjects have constituted.
Today, neo-Nazis’s use of ancient Greek and Roman sculpture seems to be ignorant of the fact that the sculpture they are appropriating depicted the very ethnicities they hate. As most ancient sculpture was painted, those ethnicities were once plain to see.
The Packing Room Prize never veers at all. The winning portrait usually depicts a person famous in the media, and it is always either the most strictly realist portrait in that range, or very occasionally a comic, but highly worked, caricature. Nothing varying from the job of accurate representation has ever made the cut.
Are these judges…genuinely concerned about cultural appropriation? Or are they actually concerned about the accusations of cultural appropriation that are likely to result (via social media) if they award and publish a story that turns out to be written by someone who doesn’t identify clearly and directly with their subject matter?