• Fine Arts (MFA)

    Buzz Slutzky

    Religious Beliebs / Justin Bieber's Anne Frank House

    Religious Beliebs Episodes 1-3 / Justin Bieber's Anne Frank House-video / installation (respectively)Religious Beliebs, a mixture of fact and fiction, imagines that Anne Frank and Justin Bieber exist in the same time period—a layering of 1943 and 2013. This series of videos is a response to Justin Bieber’s April 2013 comment in the Anne Frank House guest book that “Hopefully, (Frank) would’ve been a belieber,” meaning a fan of Bieber’s. Religious Beliebs investigates the historical misrepresentation of Anne Frank as an innocent young child, when in fact she was an ambitious and self-critical young woman who even had a bratty side. Justin Bieber is portrayed as a sensitive yet cliché schlemiel who encourages Anne, who wanted to be famous one day (she rewrote her entire diary with exposure to an audience in mind), to take the spotlight.Justin Bieber’s Anne Frank House is an installation that sarcastically imagines that Anne Frank really was a fan of Justin Bieber. A Justin Bieber T-shirt hangs on the wall, sewn with a Star of David patch. A drawing of Bieber’s face is among those of 1930’s film stars whose portraits Anne Frank pasted on her wall upon her arrival in the “Secret Annexe.” Viewers of the video series can sit on “Anne Frank’s Bed,” a folding cot, while watching Religious Beliebs Episodes 1-3. The wallpaper for Justin Bieber’s Anne Frank House was recreated from authentic 1920’s Belgian wallpaper by artist and activist Avram Finklestein.