The US Flag in the 21st Century

31 October 2000 American hip hop duo Outkast release their fouth studio album, Stankonia.  The iconic album cover consists of Big Boi and André 3000 posing in front of a huge, black-and-white US flag with inverted stars: the funkified flag of Stankonia (which actually was manufactured and hung on the wall in their Atlanta studios).  (For more, […]

The US Flag in the 20th Century (2nd half)

19 September 1952 The Adventures of Superman begins airing on American television, following an undocumented alien immigrant as he fights “the never-ending battle for truth, justice, and the American way”.  The famous opening sequence ends with George Reeves standing before a US flag, somehow briskly flying in outer space.  In less than 20 years, fiction will become […]

Money Flags

Money occasionally makes its way onto flags, as a promotion for a particular currency, a political statement, a commemoration of a ransom, or as a design exercise. For examples of all of these possibilities, see below.

Transforming Transnational Flags

Here are two more fascinating YouTube videos exploring the relationships between national flags.  Their creator goes only by the name Vexillographer. “Transforming Transnational Flags” by Vexillographer, published 11 March 2012.  30 national flags.  Produced in Microsoft PowerPoint. “Construction Paper World Flags” by Vexillographer, published 16 February 2015.  22 national flags.   A mistake: “You might […]

Nathan Hoang’s Epic FOTWANDIPUB

In 2010 Nathan Hoang, aka The Moosehead, aka DisasterPieceTheatre, while recovering from a knee injury and inspired by the flags appearing in TV coverage of the FIFA World Cup, created Flags of the World: A Non-Digital Interactive Pop-Up Book.  He then filmed himself (presumably) opening each page and showing its interactive magic, all set to music (appropriately enough, the […]

Flags by Oh Land

Here is the video for Nanna Øland Fabricius’s song “Flags” from her latest album, “Earth Sick”.  As one might expect, the video features a number of flags — her own creations: Oh Land: Flags (2014). Lyrics: It’s incredibly handsome, The teeth so white You smile to the cameras And speak for your rights While I empty […]

Art Warning the World

Art Warning the World is a collaborative online manifesto of sorts created by New York-based French artist Klaus Guingand and 201 collaborators, each in a different country.  The work centers around Guingand’s prophetic warning: Quand le mot liberte disparaitra des dictionnaires il sera trop tard pour regir.  (Which he translates as: When the word freedom ceases […]

Parsons’ Flag for London

Jonathan Parsons is a British artist who works in the medium of flags (as well as sculpture, painting, and others).  One of his most colorful creations was a new flag for London (2003): I decided that a flag for the new city state should be very colourful to reflect the city’s huge diversity. ‘Flag for London’, in […]

Hidden Beauty in Flag Icons

The internet is awash in flag icons — tiny representations of flags, in dimensions of a few pixels per side. Here are some 11-by-16 examples in the public domain, from http://www.famfamfam.com:   Here’s what happens when you blow them up. (Technically, these were enlarged to 413-by-600 size with the resize/resample function of IrfanView, using the […]

Josh Thorpe – Heavy Ambivalent Flag

In 2010 Canadian artist Josh Thorpe created a flag that contradicted itself — white on one side, black on the other — and flew it from a pole at the entrance to the Justina M. Barnicke Gallery on the University of Toronto campus, which had commissioned the work. About this work, the artist writes: With its […]