In New York Magazine’s latest cover story, Jonathan Chait writes about America’s failure in tackling the coronavirus, and how a decades-long war against the functioning of good government, a collapse of trust in experts and empiricism, and a unique strain of magical thinking turned science (and good sense) into tyranny. For the cover, New York commissioned the artist Paul Chan to produce a poster-like image from his series “New Proverbs,” which he started in January 2017 with signs used at the Women’s March in Washington, D.C. and New York.
Says Chan: “The New Proverbs are inspired in part by the posters of the infamous Westboro Baptist Church, arguably one of the pioneering Christian hate speech groups in America. The signs take visual cues from the color combinations and typographic treatments of the original church signs. But the messages do not disparage the LGBTQ community, Catholics and other Christians, Muslims, Jews, American soldiers and politicians—like the Westboro signs. Instead, the New Proverbs are directed at the current administration, who also happen to demonize the LGBTQ community, Catholics and other Christians, Muslims, Jews, American soldiers, politicians, and generally anyone who is not named Trump.”
There are over 100 New Proverb designs and they have been used in protests around the world.