The vest in the painting is most likely from the Indus Valley of Afghanistan. It is decorated with intricate embroidered patterns and mirrors, and would have been worn for special occasions. In this context we see it draped upon a wire hanger with the distinct paper wrapping of a Western dry cleaning business whose thankful message to their patrons is “We Love Our Customers”.
However, here we see specific letters of this message obscured by the vest. If we were to read what is exposed in modern shorthand, we might decipher “we love your custom”. Herein is where I intended to juxtapose the relationship of two very different cultures and their current relationship in history. I prefer to leave the message vague and open to interpretation as it is not my intention to deliver any kind of concrete meaning.
Clearly from the buttons pinned to the vest we can see a few messages eluding to patriotism, cynicism, faith and pacifism.
The wire hanger is intentionally not “hanging” on any sort of hook or nail. It is a painting and paintings can and should transcend reason. For me, this is a reminder that even though I spent so much time trying to execute verisimilitude with this picture, it is, after all, not reality.