Pop culture is consumed quickly and therefore, for the large part, mindlessly. Though powerful and influential because of its incredibly widespread nature, many consider it frivolous and fleeting, so pop culture often goes without serious contemplation and critique. Slow Beyoncé recycles the familiar language of pop culture, specifically pop music, juxtaposing representations of pop music with lyrics sung by other pop artists to create social and cultural critique and prompt an open-ended response of the audience’s invention. I took preexisting pop culture artifacts like posters and YouTube videos, added an unexpected extra layer of song lyrics, and placed the altered pop culture artifacts back into public space for them to be discovered and consumed in the way that the original artifact would have been. The juxtapositions created relatively enigmatic dialogues about issues such as class, race, and body image. Because the altered artifacts were disguised as regular pop culture objects it was more-or-less guaranteed that any person who took or viewed one of them would be someone who seeks out pop music, is familiar with the pop vernacular, and is a consumer of pop culture. Since pop music is likely already a part of these people’s lives, anyone who encountered one of my posters or videos should be someone who understands the altered artifact’s references and is able to derive some sort of meaning from the juxtaposition.
By disrupting the typical, rapid consumption of pop music, those of us who operate
in a pop culture context have the opportunity to become more mindful; those cognizant
of what they’re consuming can reflect on and question it as they continue to encounter
it, potentially changing their behavior or interaction with pop culture in self-
Dialogue and commentary generated by the project is anonymously tweeted @slowbeyonce.