Works on Paper Projects Installations Exhibitions About

Fifty-Fifty Art Collective

Time Outside Without Extension

Odes and Epochs

One for the Other

Historia

We Belong to this Band - Phase 1

We Belong to this Band - Phase 2

We Belong to this Band - Phase 3

Radiate/Cultivate

All in Good Company, All in Good Time

MSIG Pilot Project

Blindspot Galleries

Operation Pandemic Joy

O Joy!

(p)alms

Love Stories, Part 1

2003

Operation Pandemic Joy was a temporary public art event that took place during the Community Open House on September 14, 2003 in celebration of the Washington University Sesquicentennial.

Operation Pandemic Joy was conceived of as a full-scale, multi-media propaganda campaign that promoted joy. The methods and aesthetics of government war posters and billboards as well as World War II public service announcements and propagandistic material were important sources for the development of this project. Much of that source material focused on participation and citizenship investment in the national effort.

�Glittering generalities� is the propaganda technique used by Operation Pandemic Joy. Glittering generalities are emotionally appealing words so closely associated with highly valued concepts and beliefs that they carry conviction without supporting information or reason. They appeal to such emotions as love of country, home; desire for peace, freedom, glory, honor, etc.

In perhaps ironic contrast to propaganda campaigns born out of wartime necessities, Operation Pandemic Joy did not call for a nationalistic or political response. The campaign objective was a universal, timeless one and aimed in a directly humanistic sense to advocate joy. The philosophy was simple (perhaps even simplistic): a smile begets a smile (and we could all use a little more joy.)

Operation Pandemic Joy used a banner plane, printed parachutes, leaflets, and car magnets to distribute its message of universal joy.