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Bell Jar Pastoral


Warren, MI, 35mm film, 2008

So strange… This suburban neighborhood was jammed between a cluster of extended stay hotels off a major trunk road in Warren, a suburb of Detroit. It seemed so cut off from its surroundings it might as well have had a glass dome over it. Everything seemed to stop at its perimeter: the pavement, the landscaping, even the weather and ambient light conditions seemed to terminate abruptly.  The scale seemed surreal, just slightly shrunken. For the entire duration of my stay in the adjacent hotel I never saw a single instance of human activity. Adding a final ominous flourish to the vignette was the plume of clotted gray smoke rising in the distance.

That plume is the link to another oddity…

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Dagny Taggert is Diana Prince


I have been trying to integrate this earth toned Naugahyde and Corinthian leather draped superwoman into a collage for nearly a year. A powerful compositional anchor in early stages she ends up upending the gizmo midway through…although she was always well framed by this plump heroic dollar sign… anyhoo, nothing doing, so both were relegated to the clipping tray.

So, I’m randomly picking over the remaining stock at a sadly expiring bookstore the other day when I see a stout brace of Ayn Rand reprints on a bottom shelf… Ah, heady, cute undergraduate flirtations with Objectivisim…

Later, at the tail end of the night I’m pushing SuperNauga around again when it all comes together in a flash…  the Objectivist Wonder Woman, Dagny Taggert as Diana Prince, capitalism and selfishness, melodrama and cigarettes, her Green Lantern Battery the mighty dollar sign, standing athwart the globe like a colosuss. Or something. Anyway, I’d like to think Neil Peart would hang this in his den.