An olive-skinned boy glares ominously, pointing a toy plane towards twin building-block towers — one with a gaping hole, burning with construction paper fire, as toy soldiers fall to the playroom floor.
A boy on a box, covered in a black cloak and hood — his fingers wired with electrodes. A nearly-nude handcuffed boy, eyes screaming in terror as a stuffed dog wraps around his waist.
Abu Ghraib, 9/11 — meet the playroom.
A new series of controversial photographs from artist Jonathan Hobin, called In the Playroom, brings the headlines into the supposedly safe, carefree space of childhood playtime.
“I want people to acknowledge the fact that kids see the scariest things that are out there,” said Hobin of the exhibit, which among other notorious events, includes depictions of Hurricane Katrina, the 2004 tsunami, and the murder of JonBenét Ramsey.Quel relief that's what they were going for, eh? To my untrained, Philistine eye they look an awful lot like child abuse.
Hobin, who studied photography at Ryerson, said the photos are intended to tear down to (sic) illusion that, in a media-saturated world, children can be sheltered...