Now that Halloween is around the corner, and Fright Fest is in full swing on STFU, Parents, I think it’s time to shine a light on a subject that I’ve been “curating” in my files for a very long time. The subject: Poop art. The artists: Children. And ohh yes, there are photos.The thing about using poop as a means for artistic expression is that kids are not the first people to come up with the idea. Artists have been making stinky statements with human (and other) feces for years in attempts to shock the art world and/or avoid buying art materials, so this is nothing new. And for children, both creativity and poop come quite naturally, so to speak. Kids have the uncanny ability to take a dump, play with their dirty diaper contents, and then decide, hey, what the hell, I’ve already got this poop on my hands, why not rub it all over my body and the wall? They truly don’t know any better, and for that reason, they cannot be blamed for flinging their own shit around the room like a primate.
However, their parents do know better, and when they choose to post on Facebook about their kid’s latest “shit-xhibit,” they can be blamed. By me. By everyone, actually, but especially by me because I know just how many parents are participating in this online practice, and let me tell you, it’s a lot. I’ve probably seen more poop-smeared walls, cribs, and bodies over the past few years than I have actual works of art, and no number of jokes about a kid being a veritable “Poop-casso” will erase these horrors in my mind. For years, I’ve filed away these poop art submissions like some kind of bizarre hoarder, always waiting for the right moment to unleash my “art collection” to the world, but today I’m opening the vault. If you make it to the end of this column, you will come away with an education that you never ever wanted, and a new appreciation for clean, white walls. Here are but a few of the ways parents talk about “poop paint” on social media:
1. Finger Painting With a Diaper
The joys of motherhood! Right, ladies?? One day your home smells like spiced cinnamon potpourri, the next it smells like it’s been covered in literal shit! Because it has! Yay for moms.
2. Art Supplies
Poop as an artistic medium has the occasional detractor, probably because poop comes out of a person’s ass, smells awful, and stains everything forever. I like the way Orange here used a little creativity to post about her kid’s use of “homemade brown paint,” but I’m guessing her friends still winced in disgust when they read her status update. That’s not exactly the kind of inspiration people channel to buy art supplies. More like the inspiration that compels people to put down what they were eating.
3. “Swirl Patterns”
I’m thrilled that Aubrey caught her spelling and grammar errors, but umm…. SWIRL PATTERNS AND CORN POOP. Like Lisa Frank meets Damien Hirst under a horrible, terrible set of circumstances. Aubrey’s not the only one who’s “so fucking grossed out right now.”
4. Jocelyn’s Masterpiece
Regina, you are kicked off the island. Pack up your things and get the hell out of here. Lyndsey, you are a true artist yourself, because you’ve posted a picture of a wall on your Facebook Wall, and that wall happens to be covered in human waste. Very deep and disturbing stuff. Also really gross and sort of resembling a scene from the movie “Seven.” Or perhaps Jocelyn was having a REDRUM moment and trying to write out a word? This art stuff is all way over my head.
5. In The Studio
What I enjoy about this photo is that it looks like Leanne’s daughter is wearing a smock she’s been painting in for years. And she’s even got that bright-eyed, passionate, flaky artist look to her, much like my high school art teacher did. But adorable haircut and charming hippy-dippy attitude aside, this picture is a nightmare. No one needs to see it, and even though Red is correct — this photo has all the “makings” (pun intended) of future blackmail material — it’s pretty nasty as far as poop art goes. Abstraction appears to be Leanne’s daughter’s forte, but next time she should consider using something like washable crayons instead of her own night soil. If not for the sake of her own artistic reputation, then for the sake of everyone else who’s friends with her mom on Facebook.