Free Minds & Free Markets

Brickbat: Art for Art's Sake

ToiletSittiporn Kheawkham / Dreamstime.comMichael Speece has sued Winslow Township, New Jersey, for malicious prosecution after officials there charged him twice for failure to remove "trash/debris" from outside his home. But what a code enforcement officer called trash, Speece insists is art. That includes three toilets—one painted red, one white and one blue—outside his home, containing "a display of plastic flowers, as well as an artistic array of doll parts," and also Confederate flags and a "Trump 2020" flag. Speece was convicted on those charges but the conviction was overturned on appeal.

Photo Credit: Sittiporn Kheawkham /

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  • Eddy||

    That's like when I was prosecuted for my artistic piece on the decline of the American auto industry. Philistines didn't appreciate the symbolism of a car up on blocks.

  • Rat on a train||

    They also didn't appreciate my performance piece "Man on Street Corner Selling Drugs".

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    I guess I'll have to cancel my plans for "Bank Robbery in D minor."

  • Longtobefree||

    Just checking; you do know that banks no longer have great vaults full of money, right?

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    Sense of humor check: Failure to detect sense of humor.

  • SQRLSY One||

    Michael Speece's 3 outdoor toilets? I had been planning to deposit some artifacts of "E Coli Performing Their Digressive, Digestive Art in a Heterogeneous Matrix of Organic Materials" in these toilets, but then I became chicken-shit that the art critics might harshly flush my work down the crapper!

    So instead, I am now on my way to YOUR house, to tastefully arrange my "Digestive Art in a Heterogeneous Matrix of Organic Materials" on your outer house walls (outhouse walls, art-house walls?), as an exceeding generous expression of my artistic spirit!

  • Mickey Rat||

    "Amazon has pulled more than a dozen products off its website after receiving complaints that the items are offensive to Muslims."

  • Adans smith||

    Pork rines?

  • Eddy||

    This one is really popular in Saudi Arabia.

  • Necron 99||

    My first Muhammad coloring book?

  • Jerryskids||

    The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation's largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, asked the online retailer last week to remove the products, which included doormats, bath mats and other items imprinted with Islamic calligraphy, references to the Prophet Muhammad and scripture.

    The products, which were being sold by independent merchants on Amazon's website, are deemed offensive because they "would be stepped-on or otherwise disrespected by customers," CAIR said in a statement on Thursday.

    It's simple enough to go to Amazon and search for "Christian door mats" - and you know what you're going to find.

  • m4019597||

    CAIR can be instantly ignored, as it's merely a front for the Muslim Brotherhood in the US.

  • SQRLSY One||

    Yeah man see ... Amazon is offensive to me!!!!

  • SQRLSY One||

    All this Allah-this and Allah-that stuff is sooooo offensive? Let's just ban it ALL, including the Koran, and THEN they'll be happy!!!! (Maybe?)

  • Entelechy||

    Kudos to the conceptual artist who gave the porcelain throne photo credit to Sittiporn Keawhkam

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    That includes three toilets...

    Seems a little too on the nose for New Jersey.

  • A Lady of Reason||

    Sad what goes for art these days, but there are worse pieces though! That said, they should let him keep it on his property unless it's a clear health hazard....

  • Inigo Montoya||

    One city official and would-be art critic was quoted as saying, "Speece's output generally lacks any real spark of originality and shows little respect for his medium. When or if his work ever begins to conform to gallery standards for installations of this genre, he's more than welcome TOILET us know."

  • Harvard||

    What idiot would argue "Trump2020" isn't art?

  • Jerryskids||

    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, citable offenses are in the eye of the codes enforcement officer.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    Anti-social right-wing bigots have rights, too.

    Perhaps not friends among decent people in the neighborhood, but rights.

    Carry on, clingers. Just a bit longer, though.

  • Still Curmudgeoned (Nunya)||

    Drink Clorox.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    Your betters do not expect your thanks or kind words.

    Your obedience as society progresses against your wishes is sufficient.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||


    Comrade Gecko shows his true colors.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    West Factory Road in Winslow is about a rural as it gets. Seems to me like the wealthier developments on the other side of the township just want something to target.


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