Abusing kids for “art”

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By Robert Farrow

Michelle Malkin broke a story that just confirms for me just how sick and low liberalism really is.

This is unbelievably sick. A left-wing photographer, Jill Greenberg, deliberately makes toddlers cry and turns the pictures into a Los Angeles art exhibit called "End Times" to indulge her Bush Derangement Syndrome. She slaps titles like "Grand Old Party," "Four More Years," and "Apocalypse Now" onto photos of the poor children she manipulated and goaded.

The Guardian covers the exhibit here with links to the children's photos and reports how Greenberg deliberately provoked the children to tears:

When photographer Jill Greenberg decided to take a lollipop away from a small child, she had a broader purpose in mind.

"The first little boy I shot, Liam, suddenly became hysterically upset," the Los Angeles-based photographer said. "It reminded me of helplessness and anger I feel about our current political and social situation."

As the 27 two- and three-year-olds featured in her exhibition, End Times, cried and screamed, demanding the return of the lollipop given to them just moments before, Greenberg snapped away.

Someone at YouTube has posted the gallery as well:

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PopPhoto magazine has an interview with Greenberg, who used her own daughter in the exhibit as well, and speaks of the merits of children vs. monkeys as photo subjects:

When Jill Greenberg conceived the idea of photographing crying children back in 2004, she didn't anticipate the attention the project would bring to her fledgling art career, or the furor it would raise. Greenberg, who lives in Los Angeles with her husband and two children, is already known as one of the country's most success commercial photographers, with work for ad clients like Microsoft, Kraft, and Procter & Gamble and magazines like New York and Time. She has emerged as a potent force in fine art with a series of acutely lit portraits of monkeys and apes, which in turn led to her work with children.

Your images have certainly caused an uproar. What do you say to people who call you a child abuser?

I think they're insane…Maybe getting kids to cry isn't the nicest thing to do, but I'm not causing anyone permanent psychological damage.

How many kids did you shoot altogether?

Around 35. Some were the children of friends, plus my own daughter; others came from the Ford or Jet Set model agencies. Kid models aren't very expensive—not as expensive as monkeys, for example.

The lighting is very dramatic. How did you accomplish that?

It's the same lighting I used for my portraits of monkeys, and I've been using it for some recent magazine cover portraits…

Greenberg talks about the larger purpose of her "work:"

I saw this little girl who'd come to a party with her mom, and she was beautiful, so I thought it might be interesting to photograph her. When they came to my studio, the mother brought along her toddler son, and I decided to shoot him too. We took off his shirt because it was dirty. He started crying on his own, and I shot that, and when I got the contact sheets back I thought, "This could go with a caption, 'Four More Years,'" like he was appalled at George Bush's reelection…

…That was one of the things that interested me about the project—the strength and beauty of the images as images. I also thought they made a kind of political statement about the current state of anxiety a lot of people are in about the future of the country. Sometimes I just feel like crying about the way things are going.

Other photographers are appalled at Greenberg's methods. See Thomas Hawk and Jeremiah McNichols. Read and listen carefully. Turns out her methods involved more than a quick provocation. The kids were stripped and she described how frustrating it was to have parents "step out of the studio for a couple minutes" in concerted attempts to make children cry who were not cooperating.

BoingBoing reported on Greenberg's attempts to harass and intimidate Hawk. More details from Hawk here. McNichols, who shares Greenberg's political views, condemns her corruption of art:

Perhaps the greatest irony of the work is Greenberg's overlaying of a political message, one preaching compassion and intelligence at that, to a process that involved the willful manipulation of toddlers to break down their toddler-sized psyches and leave them in a pool of their own tears…

…I believe that the moral dimension of "End Times" cannot be ignored, and that an artist need not profit from societal objections to their work if those objections are sound and widely shared. I further believe that Jill Greenberg's work should not be viewed through the art-historical lens of edgy, contemporary art, but is instead a cultural hiccup that should be shelved with divisive cultural artifacts like black minstrelry, art involving the physical abuse of animals, and other works that reflect a sensibility so alien that it is better approached not as art, but as the fractured product of a diseased mind or a necrotic culture.

Indeed, this woman makes Deb Frisch look like Mr. Rogers.

Now Macsmind makes a powerful argument that this sicko might have broken the law.

“Greenberg has defended herself, telling the Los Angeles Times: “I’ve never done anything awful in my life. Pictures of crying children are upsetting, powerful. There is something instinctual that makes you want to protect them … But people are taking the pictures literally, as if they are evidence of awful things happening to these kids.”


The California Penal Code states:

“Penal Code Section 11165.3. Willful Harming or Injuring. “The willful harming or injuring of a child or the endangering of the person or health of a child,” means a situation in which any person willfully causes or permits any child to suffer, or inflicts thereon, unjustifiable physical pain or mental suffering, or having the care or custody of any child, willfully causes or permits the person or health of the child to be placed in a situation in which his or her person or health is endangered.”

Here is the Los Angeles State Attorney’s office website page for child abuse and sexual assault. The contact form is here. Here are additional contacts:

District Attorney’s Office
County of Los Angeles
210 West Temple Street, Suite 18000
Los Angeles, CA 90012-3210

Telephone (213) 974-3512
Fax (213) 974-1484
TTY (800) 457-7778
(8:30am – 5:00pm M-F)

In twelve years of law enforcement I saw a lot of things but this beats it, and it’s child abuse and should be at the least investigated. Write them, quote the code and ask them what they are going to do about it. Since her daughter was one of the children she abused, perhaps they Children’s Services should get involved as well.

Demand action be taken.

What more proof do you need that liberalism is a sick mental disorder? They defend terrorists and villify our military. They defend the right of  criminals and attack religion. They care more about the life of murders then the unborn. They attack the country that gave them freedom and defend enemies that would be happy to take their life if they could.

Now they make babies and children cry to attack Bush.

These people are sick and disguisting.

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