Renaissance man Matthew Barney is such a busy artistic powerhouse these days (Cremaster 3‘s climactic movement, “The Order,” is out this month on DVD), we thought we’d lend him a hand with the scenarios for the next Cremaster “cycle.” No, thank you, Mr. Barney!
Wearing a bronze jockstrap, an astronaut’s helmet, and a coat of mango-peach latex paint, Barney scales Angkor Wat while the Green Bay Packers sit in an empty swimming pool, taking turns to blow up a used-car-lot balloon figure of Uncle Sam through a valve on its crotch. Cambodians slowly fill up the pool with cups of guacamole. By the time Barney finishes his climb and sings “If I Can’t Sell It, I’ll Keep Sittin’ On It,” the Packers are immersed.
Whoopi Goldberg reads the Magna Carta over the Yankee Stadium PA system, as a boa constrictor slowly slithers around the bases after a remote-control toy car with a real mouse in the driver’s seat. In the outfield, 30 naked women play 30 grand pianos wearing cardboard Dalai Lama masks. When the boa makes it home, fireworks erupt, spelling “I LIKE IKE” in the sky.
Strapped together with bungee cords, Barney and a proboscis monkey run through a shopping mall as members of the Bolshoi Ballet and the cast of Mummenschanz battle each other with paintball guns. Barney is dressed as Elizabeth II; the monkey is completely shaved. In Sears, they meet Udo Kier, who’s trimming dwarf juniper trees with a toenail cutter. Together the trio make it to the parking lot, board a circus elephant, and ride into the sunset.