In God We Trust / America’s Most Wanted 2004

José A. Toirac, Meira Marrero and Loring McAlpin
New Installations, Artists in Residence: Cuba, October 3, 2004 – April 24, 2005
neon, motor oil, paint, digital print, screen-prints, sand

In this work, the artists explore the depth of the faults in sociopolitical, ideological, religious, and economic systems.


The triad of José Toirac, Meira Marrero, and Loring McAlpin explores the depth of the faults in sociopolitical, ideological, religious, and economic systems in their work, In God We Trust/America’s Most Wanted. They take on the modern era as one more mirage that vanishes amidst its own beams of light, where confusion, skepticism, and the collapse of utopias open up an even more overwhelming vacuum.

The artists focus their attention on the repercussions and consequences of terrorist acts, taking September 11 as a point of departure. This project also seeks to pay homage to one of the most pertinent figures of contemporary art — Andy Warhol.

Their work is a probing search of real events, documents, films, and interviews that identify the various and contradictory levels of political-economic and philosophical-religious confrontation. This installation is a refutation of the notion of humanity’s historical progress. As the world bears witness to new tragedy, Toirac, Marrero, and Loring manage to create a truthful discourse on the power relations that underlie finance, politics, and religion — all supper companions at the same table.

The stigma and cliché of the desert, the noxious odors of petroleum, recollections of war, the faces of persecuted terrorists — all are confronted by the corporal beauty and apparent innocence of young soldiers who waste their youth and time in absurd wars and conflicts. The artists’ work establishes a link between uneven realities, laid out in a visual amalgam that leads us into a dangerous zone of confrontations and disjunctions, of leas into the void. There is no God who protects Humanity. The word prudence has been excised from the dictionary. We have all been trained as voracious sheep to carry out cruel acts of cunning.  – Magda Ileana González-Mora, Curator

About the Artist

José A. Toirac (Cuban, b. 1966) studied and later taught at the Instituto Superior de Arte and has collaborated since 1994 with Meira Marrero (Cuban, b. 1969), a curator and art critic.

Loring McAlpin (b. 1960) is an artist and media producer based in New York City. A founding member of the AIDS Activist art collective Gran Fury, has created public art projects and individual gallery shows, exhibiting in the United States and Europe. Work with Gran Fury included producing radio and television spots for The American Center in Paris, and Creative Time in New York, as well as with major museums in America and in Europe. Transitioning from the art world into documentary and film, he was the associate producer on Ira Sachs first feature The Delta. Oral history work has included work with the ACT UP Oral History Project (where many years ago he formed ACT UP NYCs Prison Issues subcommittee) as well as radio documentaries with Kate Bland for Just Radio/BBC Radio 2.