HOW TO MAKE AN AMERICAN NATIVITY 

At first glance, the piece seems innocuous enough. Most passersby probably never register the carnage so casually set before them. Ramirez cleverly copied the pattern of traditional folkloric imagery, but offers outrageous pop substitutions for principle players, set against the smoldering skyline of post-9-11 New York City. Festive Christmas presents literally scream with corporate logos. An omnipotent alien sits in place of the baby Jesus, flanked by a bleating, two-headed lamb. Skeletal storm troopers form an imposing three wise men as Santa Claus appears as a bloated, inflated pig with a saucer for a sleigh. The piece is rendered in dizzyingly apocalyptic detail, down to its delicately looping razor wire tinsel. Make an effort to see this seasonal anomaly before it, too, is scraped off the window and unceremoniously discarded along with less-interesting holiday accoutrements.

CHUCK RAMIREZ' 'AMERICAN NATIVITY'
Through January 15
The Bower
1114 S. St. Mary's Street
535-3302


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