I thought I’d give you a little sampling of some of the most famous works most closely associated with these Unites States. This isn’t a museum survey that is all-inclusive… it is deficient in many areas – but this is just me, not a curatorial body, so take it for what it’s worth. Warhol appears a few times as does Ed Ruscha, two of my favorites. When Obama ran in 2008, I created this HOPE piece for Art For Obama from a vintage paint by number original. When it was auctioned, with the proceeds went to his campaign, the buyer ended up being in his administration and subsequently, I got a tour of the West Wing! (It was also made into a soap box for Anthropologie.) So, I had to include it here – sue me if I’m not quite in these guy’s league. It’s a free country, isn’t it?! I’m SO excited that the new Whitey Museum, whose mission is to highlight American artists, is opening up next Spring just a block from my studio in the Meatpacking District. I have to say, I AM proud to be an American artist –specifically, a gay New York one – but I really it doesn’t differ much from being an artist from anywhere else in the world. The best work grabs you by the shoulders and shakes you, no matter what country the maker lives in. That’s why it’s called “universal truth”. But it takes the viewer to mean ANYTHING at all. That is what makes it art.