Posing next to the sculpture he produced along with Joshua "Ginger" Monroe (of "Naked Donald Trump" statues fame), artist Plastic Jesus wears a shirt that reads "STOP MAKING STUPID PEOPLE FAMOUS." The spirit of the shirt aligns perfectly with the spirit of the sculpture the duo strategically placed close to the famous theater that will host the 90th Academy Awards on Sunday.
On-the-nose dialog may be frowned upon in Hollywood, but the blunt message of the artists' sculpture is brutally effective: A golden Harvey Weinstein, in a partly open robe, seated on a couch, with an Oscar held suggestively near his crotch and his left arm welcoming passersby to sit with him awhile... Ouch.
Here's the dethroned and partly disrobed Weinstein momentarily alone:
And here he is with Plastic Jesus on the megaproducer's easy-access "casting couch":
The Hollywood Reporter spoke to both artists about the piece and got some golden quotes.
"For many years the exploitation of many hopefuls and established names in the industry was brushed under the carpet with their complaints of harassment and sexual abuse being ignored or worse," Plastic Jesus, a former London photojournalist who won't give his real name, told THR. "Hopefully, now in the light of recent allegations against many leading figures in Hollywood the industry will clean up its act.”
"The whole couch and the entire image it gives off was to me a visual representation of the practices and methods that are used in Hollywood with these big powerful people," Ginger told the paper. "They have money and power to give jobs and they use that for their own sexual gratification and there's no better way to visualize this than the way we did with the casting couch."
"To be able to knock the monster down a peg and poke fun and ridicule it helps remove its power," said Ginger. "That's how you take these powerful people down. As Mark Twain once said, 'Against the assault of laughter, nothing can stand.'"
THR notes that Plastic Jesus has smacked celebrities before, including a "coke-snorting Oscar statue" in 2015 and a golden "False Idol" Kanye West-as-Jesus statue last year:
Ginger gained national notoriety in 2016 with his naked Donald Trump statues that popped up in several cities: