The events of January 6, 2021, live in a strange sort of infamy. Absent any congressional investigation so far into what President Joe Biden has described as the “worst attack on our democracy since the Civil War,” the day has become, like so much in American politics, a confusing battlefield of warring narratives. Consider this an attempt at clarity, featuring Michael Wolff’s detailed account of how the day unfolded within the White House as a riot raged on Capitol Hill; historical perspectives from Rick Perlstein, Mychal Denzel Smith, and Suzy Hansen; an examination by Talia Lavin of the martyrs who have emerged on the right in the riot’s aftermath; and Andrew Rice’s profile of Attorney General Merrick Garland, who is responsible for holding hundreds of insurrectionists to account.
The government has accused more than 500 people of committing crimes at the Capitol on January 6: dragging a police officer down the stairs of the Capitol and beating him, smoking weed inside the Capitol, carrying bear mace and spraying at Capitol Police, fighting Capitol Police using a stolen riot shield and calling for reinforcements, and much more. The following allegations are drawn from indictments and affidavits filed in federal court. Additional contextual details are drawn from public databases and reporting. Read more allegations from that day.
Robert Longo used Mark Peterson’s photo of the rioters being tear gassed as they attempted to break into the Capitol on January 6th as the basis for this charcoal drawing, seen at the top and on the cover.
“I wanted to depict this scene as performative,” he explains. “The protagonist stands draped in an American flag cape, posturing as a cinematic superhero or classical Greek statue while being recorded on an iPhone, visible in the right of the composition. I am shocked by the degree of rage and anger in these Insurrectionists, but it is ineffective to dismiss these people as merely Trumpified Crazies. Rather, in order to move forward and to better understand, we must consider the origin of this destructive anger and ask ourselves the question: is it truly possible that we can come together as one country or are we ultimately destined to fall apart as a nation?”’ This work will be included in Longo’s debut exhibition at Pace Gallery in New York, on view September 10 to October 23. Read more about the cover in our press room.