“U.S.A. Surpasses All the Genocide Records, the flag poster, is curiously only listed once in Fluxus publications and then by implication, as a publication of Implosions, a commercial branch of Fluxus started by Maciunas, Robert Watts, and Herman Fine. The work was not signed. It has the image of death in place of stars, and calculations about genocide in place of stripes. The poster was widely distrbuted, and is illustrated in books on political posters from that era. I think that Maciunas particularly wanted the poster to be anonymous so that its impact would be seen for itself, not because of a name associated with it. On the poster, one is invited to send for calculations and references to ‘p.o. box 180, New York, NY 10012‘ (the fluxus postal box). One would have received an essay with calculations titled U.S. Surpasses All Nazi Genocide Records, with Maciunas’ name printed on it.” — Fluxus Codex,pp. 391 via Significant Object
The US flag has long provided artists a canvas for protest. Its simple, graphic iconography serves as a foil for the nation’s more complicated past and present. This piece is among several stars-and-stripes reinterpretations that appear in Strikethrough: Typographic Messages of Protest, a Letterform Archive exhibition opening July 23, 2022.