Nazi Burning Flag1992 54" x 54". Oil on Linen with Twill Ticking Edges.
Also known as "In Support of the 1st Amendment #2."
About the Artwork:
Quite simply, a painting of a burning Nazi flag ablaze with smoke and fire in primarily red, black and white pigmentation. This painting was sent to Berlin but not exhibited. It is illegal to display a swastika in Germany.
"Congress shall make no law... adridging the Freedom of Speech, or the Press..." - From the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
In recent year, patriotic congressmen have tried to introduce a ndew amendment to the constitution, making it illegal to burn the American Flag. It is just such misguided politicians that prompted me to paint a burning flag. As a work of art, this image forces the viewer to, at least, think about what a flag is a symbol of, just like a painting, and what it would really mean if it became illegal to burn a flag. If such a law were to exist, then the painting of a burning flag would come into question, and no doubt, be deemed illegal. How could a work of art be illegal? How could we have freedom of expression if a law were to ban a piece of art? Once any work of art is deemed illegal, the true meaning of Flag Burning, Book Burning and the First Amendment of our constitution would come into focus.
- R. Cenedella