Ian Trout | there-there

by Hannah Jackson

Painter Ian Trout’s new exhibit Corporate Personhood is now on display at there-there gallery in Los Angeles. Trout’s exhibit skewers the infamous court cases Citizens United v. FEC (2010) and Burwell v. Hobby Lobby (2014), which granted corporations unlimited political spending and allowed for-profit corporations to hold religious views (thereby allowing religious objection to covering contraceptives), respectively.

The clever name of the show references Chief Justice Morrison Wiate, who in 1886 claimed that corporations are considered persons, thus changing the inherent meaning of the 14th amendment to provide equal protections to “natural persons” as well as corporations. Trout cheekily explores what a “corporate person” could be in this exhibit, combining modernism, logos, and the body—a comment on the absurdity of this idea of corporate personhood.

Corporate Personhood also features political cartoons, altered to fit Kasimir Malevich’s theory of supremacism. Trout points out the similarities between supremacism’s desire for “non-objective creation” with the Justices’ stripped definition of personhood.

Corporate Personhood will be showing through September 8th.

there-there gallery is located at 4859 Fountain Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90029