Not too long ago, we addressed the question of whether art could be quantified. What I would like to consider is if all we need to do to consider something art is to merely apply the label art to it. Having already seen the curious art of Caleb Larsen, I thought I had seen it all when it came to art that didn’t really seem like art to me. I was ill prepared for the shock I would receive when I came across a web site created by Nate Hill called White Power Milk.
When I first saw the White Power Milk site I immediately reacted with a mixture of disgust and confusion. Could this really be a serious web site, I thought to myself. The gist of the site is that it purports to offer for sale milk that has been gargled in the mouth of your choice of well bred white women, from the best of backgrounds and schooling.
The point of this is that by being gargled by prestigious white women, milk is purified and therefore better for you. As I went further along into the depths of this bizarre web site, I found that you could see particulars of each white woman along with cost per half ounce as well as two ounces with delivery information in New York City and outside of it.
Looking at the frequently asked questions, I am immediately shocked to see that one of the questions is whether the site is real or not and whether the milk really is for sale or not — with the rather upsetting answers that the site is real, and that the milk really is being sold. I cannot fathom that anyone would be willing to waste over one hundred dollars to find out if it is really possible to buy milk “purified” by being gargled by attractive women, let alone have a personalized video recorded for them.
By popular demand, you can now purchase a milk gargling video performed by a select number of our rich, beautiful, white girls. If you have purchased the video + purified milk delivery package, she will purify the very milk on-camera that is delivered to you. After your order is processed, your video is recorded within 3 business days and uploaded to a password protected channel (made especially for you) hosted on Vimeo.com.
The truth of the site made itself known when I came across the Terms & Conditions link, buried deep and down on each page. Particularly notable on this page is this notice — “Buyer understands that a portion of the information on this website has been fictionalized.” By this we can only possibly understand that the entire web site could be and most likely is false — the identities of women or whether the product being sold is even real milk.
As blatantly false as White Power Milk clearly is, it to me cannot be quantified in any way as art. In any case it is most certainly a matter of very poor taste. Even in the curious case of Caleb Larsen, the most extreme works of artwork involved taking money in exchange for nothing, or even seemingly arbitrarily printed dots of color representing the entire works of Shakespeare.
Perhaps it’s just that I, at the age of nearly thirty four, just don’t “get” new art and what the innovations of web sites have brought to the world of art in the last twenty-one years. Maybe, on the other hand, this really is just bad art brought to you in an relatively new format.