CRAZY IS THE NEW BLACK
Update: The Washington Post reports- "Filmmaker" Joe Gibbons, arrested for bank robbery (as art) back in the winter, has pleaded guilty to burglary. He will be sentenced next month.
I'm actually in a Gibbon's film. It's a rambling piece of crap titled THE GENIUS. I play a disturbed individual who threatens my doctor (played by Joe) with a Swiss Army knife. A FUCKING SWISS ARMY KNIFE! What was I supposed to do cork screw him to death? Aside from being typecast as a wing nut with a grudge, my film career stalled after this. Even a mention in Variety didn't help. The phone stopped ringing. I wasn't much of an actor. Oh well. After that I kinda lost touch with Joe.
I won't rehash all the particulars of Joe's bank robbing career. Suffice it to say it was short and about as stellar as his film career. He robbed a bank in R.I. for $3000 and one in NYC for a thousand and change. Both robberies he perpetrated with a video camera, not a gun. Who has a video camera anymore? Well, when he got popped he told his cellmate, who told the NY Post that "He did it as art. He's an intellectual." I guess that's as good as a retrospective at MOMA for tabloid street cred. And, goddamnit he's using it as his defense. Now I'm always down with calling what you do art (no matter how outlandish), if.....and this is a big IF....you can articulate your reasons for doing so, and it fits, historically speaking. That is not to say it has to have precedent, only that you can convince me.
To this end the writer for the WP put Joe in the genre of "non-collectible" artist. The video would negate this categorization. Films and videos can and are collected. He also mentioned "in the tradition" of Chris Burden. Ugh! Poor Chris must be spinning in his grave. Chris did highly collectable art, informed by early work that at its core may not have produced objects, but always produced an image. Gibbons is not in Burden's league. Poor Joe has a screw loose. And I don't think it's an "art screw". Now the Queens Museum is showing the robbery footage. If I was a teller or anyone on that footage I would sue The Queens Museum. A thief is a thief. When a Black kid gets sent off to Rikers without trial for three years and has his life destroyed, committing suicide upon his release, I wonder how the wheels of justice will turn for the "Wacky MIT Prof."? Art is a great defense for many actions....but not this one. Plus he was just crazy enough to plead guilty. I rest my case.