Maury Gortemiller - Make Believe

The series “Make Believe” pairs original photographs with reconfigured text from Donald Trump’s 1987 book The Art of the Deal. Each image title derives from one specific page via a Dadaist “cut-up” approach, in which words and phrases are decontextualized, reordered and repurposed. While Trump’s personality and reputation certainly form a considerable presence in the work, the images and the titles are not meant to refer specifically to the President or the present political climate. Rather, the imagery and text are often intended to lampoon the braggadocio and surliness of the authorial voice. In other instances, images evoke human qualities that I identify as absent or lacking in the book: a capacity for wonder, humility, and a recognition of one’s shortcomings. Ultimately, I intend the series as an antidote and corrective to unbridled egotism and nationalism.