Traditionally, a single-issue voter casts a vote for a candidate who supports that particular issue, regardless of the rest of that candidate’s platform. But, is any issue ever so individual, impervious to context and history? Is a vote on pandemic preparedness not also a vote on wealth stratification, healthcare, and labor rights? A vote on reproductive rights not also a vote on access to public education? A vote on climate policy not also a vote on systems of racial oppression, itself a vote on economic disenfranchisement due to the nature of racial capitalism?
SINGLE ISSUE asks us to consider context. No voter issue floats alone in the political ether, untethered from large, powerful systemic forces which undergird every facet of American life. Likewise, no candidate merits a single-issue vote. What may seem singular to one person thrusts untold implications on many others. A consideration of context requires centering the collective over the individual.
In this exhibition, 10 American artists respond to our American context, offering works in a variety of media which examine those undergirding forces and the many intersecting issues born from their depths. As our mission at Un-American Blackbox is to uplift and celebrate the multiplicity of what it means to be American, SINGLE ISSUE aims to widen the scope of discourse around voter issues, expanding the frame to let the contextual layers show.
Curator + Producer