By Murray Whyte
From Dread Scott’s supreme court showdown to Jasper Johns’ series of homemade renditions, artists have been using Old Glory to convey ideas about the country it represents for decades
In a now famous tweet revealing, yet again, his tenuous grasp on the US constitution, Donald Trump suggested that anyone daring to burn a US flag should be stripped of their citizenship. Never mind that the US supreme court ruled on that very act in 1989, deeming it protected free expression under the first amendment (see Dread Scott, below); retro-fitting Old Glory as a symbolic vehicle for the full breadth of interpretation of American identity has been a strategy of artists and activists alike for decades.
What follows are some of the best known and most relevant displays for this badly strained moment for the American psyche.