Jakob S. Boeskov

Thanks to Jakob S. Boeskov, Denmark was represented among the other weapon-producing nations at one of the world’s largest weapon fairs, China Police 2002, in Beijing. Boeskov participated as a representative of the fictitious weapons firm Empire North, which under the Nazi-inspired slogan ‘The Logical Solution’ presented the so-called ID Sniper. Surrounded by the newest equipment in sophisticated technological warfare, Boeskov performed as a serious weapons dealer throughout the fair. The weapon, ID Sniper, is envisioned as a tool to make the authorities’ fight against terror efficient, to give the police the possibility to control and observe suspicious persons during mass demonstrations and so on. The idea is that one uses the rifle to shoot a GPS microchip into the suspect, who will only feel a small prick, like a mosquito bite. In this way it is possible – without violent clashes and problematic arrests – to keep an eye on suspicious persons’ comings and goings via satellite. In spite of the fact that Boeskov only could present the weapon as a model, he received positive responses from many interested parties – including representatives from various authorities.

By now infiltrating different milieus incognito has become a trademark of Boeskov – like a Günther Grass of the art world. The subject is almost always international politics or the political influence of multinational corporations, such as the Danish shipping company A.P. Møller’s involvement in the Iraq War. Most recently Boeskov has pretended to be the leader of a fictitious Republican NGO-group from Denmark, Danes for Bush. Together with the Danish journalist Mads Brügger, he sought out republican election meetings in the US before the presidential elections in 2004. The result was a kind of gonzo-journalistic documentary – shown on Danish national TV in three episodes – which follows the small delegation, dressed in spectacular red/white campaign costumes, as they exchange opinions and campaign experiences with Republican Party colleagues all over the US. In Texas they awarded a so-called Freedom Fighter Award to the controversial Judge Podgorski, who, after being involved in (then govenor) Bush’s gassing of a retarded man, has been criticised by several human rights organisations. And during the Republican convention in New York, members of Danes for Bush are seen yelling, ‘Get a job!’ to a large group of anti-war demonstrators.

Boeskov has created the visual identity of Danes for Bush – from campaign badges to an over-sized, inflatable pig mascot. His background is in cartoons; he is for example behind the underground fanzine Flax Letters. And exactly the narrative still plays a major role in the peculiar hybrid of pop art, documentarism and political activism of Jakob S. Boeskov.


By Pernille Albrethsen, translated by Eva May


"Danes For Bush"
(2004) Photo: Frederik Harsløf Copyright: Danish Broadcasting Corporation