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USS PASTORAL - The Bloodletter Broadside Series

USS PASTORAL - The Bloodletter Broadside Series

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The Bloodletter Broadsides, imprinted on Combat Paper (pulped military uniforms by Frontline Arts), depict image over substance. These meditations produced by Snowflake.Media ask: Who gave blood? What makes grass grow? When does soil belong to us? Where does our blood go? Why?

USS PASTORAL includes five imprints:

5. Brave Bombs - With ordnance (no “i”) or terrorism, to enforce laws or perpetrate chaos, our force defined the disorder in Babylon.

4. Catapult - We rode through the Persian Gulf, into the middle of a vast struggle between clerics and princes seeking dominance over two vast land masses.

3. The Sun Also Sets - Pulling out of Abu Dhabi into the oily Gulf, toward the end of Operation Iraqi Freedom a SEAL team attached to the USS Truman rescued a few Muslim princesses out of fuel, wearing bikinis, stranded on their yacht at sunset.

2. On Blasphemous Jets - In repressed silence, under the pressure of turbines, we watched our jets fly in the darkness until their lights blinked out among the stars.

1. Spangles Wave - Once at Naples, the admiral asked had our ships’ speakers pointed toward Rome, and we played the Star Spangled Banner at full blast, so loud it blasted through our crainials at 8am colors. Then someone played Down With the Sickness, Disturbed for the FOD walk.

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“Universal literacy was supposed to educate the common man to control his environment. Once he could read and write he would have a mind fit to rule. So ran the democratic doctrine. But instead of a mind, universal literacy has given him rubber stamps, rubber stamps inked with advertising slogans, with editorials, with published scientific data, with the trivialities of the tabloids and the platitudes of history, but quite innocent of original thought. Each man's rubber stamps are the duplicates of millions of others, so that when those millions are exposed to the same stimuli, all receive identical imprints. It may seem an exaggeration to say that the American public gets most of its ideas in this wholesale fashion. The mechanism by which ideas are disseminated on a large scale is propaganda, in the broad sense of an organized effort to spread a particular belief or doctrine.”

- Edward Bernays, Propaganda

USS Pastoral uses apophenia (our tendency to see patterns in apparently unrelated things) as a form for poems: Spangled, Blasphemous Jets, and The Sun Also Sets. Set in the Persian Gulf, imprinted on Combat Paper, this poem honors nostalgia for naval expeditions, explores the aesthetics of nationalism and nature, and salutes those who suffered in America's long war for the greater Middle East.

Ten years ago, as an Aviation Electrician aboard the USS Harry S Truman in the mid aughts, Snowflake kept a journal, wrote short fictions and composed poetry each day afloat. Recently inspired by Gregory Corso's "BOMB," he formed poetic pareidolia editing lines from several pages of these journals, creating this series of imprints.

To launch Agape Guru, Snowflake created a special series of Bloodletter Broadsides using his own blood as ink in the style of Nate Heilman and Ted Lawson. Production of these broadsides begins on July 4th, 2018. They will be time stamped with ISO 8601, in response to the rise of crypto-currency. Each broadside includes a scrap of blood soaked Combat Paper, to verify authenticity.

All revenue from the USS PASTORAL funds a new artistic installation by Nate Heilman, codename “Return with a Shitbox” targeting a major artistic institution in America.