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Be shocked by this article about the

an exposé of bigotry and political correctness in the arts
- Bob Fugett (SlingShot)

Oh, these small people and their little magazines.

- Charles Mannino

Truth is an absolute defense.
- American Road Cycling legal team

Before reading further check out:  SEARCH GOOGLE and SEARCH MSN

SlingShot has gone and done it again.

As an ironic and astounding follow-up to SlingShot's renowned censoring by the Local Taliban, he has once again been censored.

This time not for his words, but for images.

You are going to be dumbfounded and amazed by this.

Or maybe not.

Can you guess why?

Above are the three paid ads that were censored by
The Hudson River Museum & Gallery Guide
Can you guess why?

In December of 2005, SlingShot created a series of three full-page Sugar Loaf, NY ads (shown above) prepared for a contracted agreement with The Hudson River Museum & Gallery Guide.

The ads were scheduled to run on pages 3, 5, and 7 of the little art magazine's 2006 Spring edition.

However, soon after the final artwork was delivered, the magazine backed out of the agreement and refused to publish the ads as previously agreed.

An agent of the periodical went so far as to try and control the content of the paid for ads.

When the actual reason for the denial was finally understood, SlingShot was left aghast—realizing that it was due to a cultural bias and bigotry as the magazine attempted to first alter then finally censor the content of the ads.

Turns out it was because of what was deemed to be a "politically incorrect" element on one of the pages.

Can you guess which ad above was the offending one?

Maybe it will help you decide if you click on the images for a closer look.

You will need all the help you can get to see where the problem lies.

SlingShot was not so surprised, because he had anticipated a problem... just like he had expected there might be a problem before publication of the now famous Spin Bitch article.

But there are many things of greater importance than political correctness.

Thus Bob saw the potential problem but still incorporated the image into the ad.

He deemed it was a necessary illustration of the artist's work.

After all, the work is robustly unique and richly deserving of attention, and this particular piece required proud display in hopes of bringing widespread understanding of its worth, regardless of possible inflammatory content.

Following is a story of horrid political intrigue, of social and cultural censorship, and of the fruitless snobbery of a wannabe magazine cobbled together by wannabe artists.

Cultural Bigots

Before you even think about advertising in this tiny art rag, be sure to read on!

The Idea

The idea for the triple-page ad was simple.

It was to fill the first three full right side pages at the front of the magazine, and it was to show the work of three separate Sugar Loaf artisans.

Plus the ad copy was to be as simple as possible in order to allow the images to speak for themselves.

You will notice on the reprints of the images above, the pages each contained but a single word of advertising copy.

Only one large exclamation (bottom left of each image) which read in order:

Woah!    Yowsa!     Shebang!

Actually even those few words were not needed, but they did provide a startling repeat of just what would have already appeared in any viewer's mind.

The images were striking and true to each artist's work.

Website addresses were placed below each exclamation leading to more information about each artisan's work online.

The money was in place, and everything was all set up and ready to run: then came the trouble.

The Problem

One similar page had already run for Endico, and the ads were to be the first in a series of other like minded ads.

SlingShot had long since become sick and tired of seeing the local Sugar Loaf artistic community perpetually misrepresented by a steady stream of wannabe startup businesses who (over the past 30 years previous) had wandered into town, taken over the advertising, failed in their businesses, and left the true artisans in the Hamlet to endure the misunderstanding that they left behind.

When Bob saw the first issue of the Hudson River Museum & Gallery Guide, he knew two things.

First, the magazine had good enough print quality with an appropriate format for advertising the arts.

Second, the true core artisan businesses which had made Sugar Loaf, NY a special destination (known throughout the world), were most likely going to be missed once again in the uninformed promotional wrangling of (soon to be gone) new comers.

Moreover, Bob was very much aware of the long standing problem with local media and tourism groups, who uniformly maintained a general lack of understanding about why Sugar Loaf was truly singular, and why the artisans flourished despite a virtual black-out by the very groups who were supposed to be pointing out their specialties.

The Answer

SlingShot decided to take it upon himself to put together a series of ads that went to the heart of the matter, and he offered to pay for their placement himself.

In that way he could put his full focus on making the best ads possible, still under the intense direction of the artists involved, but without the burden of cost based decisions and discussions as to whether or not this advertising venue would be worth it.

His own feeling was that it probably would not be worth much to the community, but at least there would be a clear articulation of what that community is... finally.

He spent two weeks running draft copies of the three ads back and forth to each artist, so they did not even have to leave their studios in order to enjoy the benefits of this advertising campaign.

As it turned out, he was not going to have to pay for all of it, because the results were eliciting such excitement that those involved had offered to pay their own way.

The Process

In summary, the ads were assembled using 150 years of total arts, graphics, and cultural experience (a half dozen 30-year  plus professional artists working together) combined efforts to place these ads stratospherically above any of the other ads that would be running in the same Hudson River Museum & Gallery Guide issues.

Needless to say, SlingShot was very proud to submit the final artwork to the magazine, "Job well done, time to get ready for this winter's cycling in Florida."

 The Censorship

It was only a few days later that Mary Endico (who was handling phone call discussions with the magazine) got the ominous call.

She had previously had all her dealings with Hudson River Museum & Gallery Guide's Editor/Publisher - Douglas Alderfor.

But this call came from Managing Editor - Peter Occhiogrosso.

Apparently, there was a problem with the ad placement.

Mary was told that somebody had made a mistake, and the ads could not run on consecutive pages as per the contract.

There was another advertiser who would need to be placed in between the three purchased pages.

SlingShot was passing by Mary's desk as this unfolded, so it became a conference call, and SlingShot said merely, "No problem, we'll just put it off till next issue."

Bob knew right away, but Mary was still unaware that a major contractual agreement had been broken (and this meant trouble), so she asked, "Well, what if we bump all three pages back a page?"

Peter Occhiogrosso replied (in a tone unbecoming a service rep), "Well that might work. But there is also a problem with one of the pages."

There ensued a lengthy lecture about composition, about the need to adequately represent the artist's work, and about the need to make the pages uniform in appearance.

It seems Peter Occhiogrosso had assumed the ad series was being put together by a standard "paste up business" (an ads for hire business with no actual input into the final outcome) who would be paid a small fee by the artists.

Of course there would be the usual kick-back from the publication itself—under the guise of, "design artists' rates."

So if things didn't go well, somebody would be over a barrel when the ads didn't run.

Peter Occhiogrosso was probably used to being in that particular cat bird's seat.

Peter had not a clue that these ads had been put together by somebody actually involved with one of the businesses (an artist himself), and that they were doing the work gratis, and how despite that they had already spent two weeks making sure each artist was over-the-top happy with their ad.

Unfortunately for Peter Occhiogrosso, this was not just another standard opportunity to make an insecure "ad agency" cave in to an obviously superior "studied artistic aesthetic."

Had the World not Changed

Peter had also missed the fact that the world was changed.

The Internet already allowed for publication of unique information on a scale that his little art magazine was never going to be able to match.

In this case, it was SlingShot who enjoyed total control of the product, because on the web Bob happens to know something about how to make things happen.

His skills (though not immediately obvious) far outweighed Peter's old timey facility at merely kicking around insecure artist wannabes (not to mention the smattering of a wish to be gallery or two).

This was a lesson our little art rag would have to learn over time.

Sugar Loaf did not need their magazine, nor did Bob (certainly), but he merely hoped see the truth about the state of the arts in Sugar Loaf accurately portrayed in print just one time before he died.

Finally, this Peter guy made his fatal error.

He said, "Well, if you would just take the American Eagle out of the ad, it will be fine."

"WHAT?!" shouted Bob as he turned toward the door.

Occhiogrosso fumbled, "Well, the magazine has a policy of not publishing commercial work such as signs. And of course no crafts at all. Only art."

That pretty much clinched it for SlingShot.

He yelled to Mary as he left the room, "Hang up the phone. You are not advertising in that fucking magazine. Cancel the contract."

SlingShot did not even hang around to hear it explained to Peter that there were in fact numerous crafts already advertised in their current issue—with those pages pointed out to him.

There was even an ad with Mickey Mouse in it, which probably says more about The Hudson River Museum and Gallery Guide than anything else stated here.

SlingShot also did not stay to hear it pointed out that the American Eagle (which was so obviously inappropriately displayed) was not a sign at all, but was a wall hanging, as in the likes of a Monet, Degas, Van Gough, Da Vinci, etc.

He didn't even get to hear it pointed out to Peter that this American Eagle was not just a block of wood purchased at a crafters' retail store and "painted up pretty," but it was an actual wood sculpture covered in true Gold Leaf.

I was not mentioned to Peter, but his red-herring problem with the composition of the Eagle actually pointed to a clever use of foreshortening (a design concept, developed and refined by the Renaissance Masters), and it was purposely used in this ad to good effect as the perfect solution for a problematic compositional necessity.

However, it was mentioned to Peter that the "not placing the images in a square to match the other ads," was specifically requested by the wood sculpting artist himself, because he, "didn't want this to look like a typical advertisement," (as apposed to it not likely to be accepted by him), though it was not explained that this wish came from somebody who was a second generation artisan who had polished their aesthetic by receiving a college level art degree then refining it over 30 years working as a professional in the field!

SlingShot did not have to stay by the phone to hear all of this, because he had immediately understood that it was a forgone conclusion that it was going to be the all of us (artisans) who just did not know how to design stuff.

And, of course, the image of the American Eagle itself had nothing to do with it.

Yeah, right.

Degreed Warrior

So now SlingShot had earned his censorship wings.

Previously the Religious Right tried to take him out over the Spin Bitch episode.

Now Liberal Left Wing Extremists had taken their shot.

Guess what guys? The Internet is out of the bag. SlingShot was phased not at all.

The Solution

Just wait till one of these guys finally gets a computer and does an Internet search for their own name or the magazine's.

 The world is changing on these sorts of aggravating assholes from New York City, accustomed to being able to intimidate "artists" using snobbery alone.

The Editor/Publisher - Douglas Alderfor, didn't even know what a TIFF file is.

Just wait till one of these guys finally gets a computer and learns how to:  SEARCH GOOGLE and SEARCH MSN, for "The Hudson River Museum & Gallery Guide."

They might actually start treating "artists" with a little more respect after that.

But of course it will be too late for them. Too bad. What a loss.

Post Script Elaboration

As of December of 2005, the Hudson River Museum & Gallery Guide is a startup periodical, so you might be searching for information about it using a number of names in order to decide about your own advertising budget.

Several possible search criteria are provided below, so Internet search engine robots can gather information about this page that you are reading.

The chief owner/operators/principals of that mag from whom the cultural bigotry, censorship, and inept handling of a client were unerringly exhibited, and described above are:

Editor/Publisher - Douglas Alderfor
Managing Editor - Peter Occhiogrosso

Some of the other principals who must also bear responsibility due to their involvement in the publication are:

Art Director - Diana Rose
Advertising/Sales - Paula Darlington

You may wish to contact the Hudson River Museum & Gallery Guide to question them directly.

Be aware they are not in the least bit web savvy, so they might not even bother to answer you.

The Publisher himself does not even know what a TIFF file is.

In any case, here is the e-mail address:

[01/16/11: The inevitable demise of this mag came some time ago.]

Plus, their web site (if you choose to call it such) is at:

[01/16/11: This link also went down with the mag.]

definitely will not find
ENDICO WATERCOLORS listed there, Mary requested her name be removed from the site, and cancelled her advertising contract due to their obvious bigotry along with the censorship they perpetrated.

In any case, you might want to think long and hard about wasting your money advertising in the Hudson River Museum & Gallery Guide.

Supporting such drivel will not help your business, plus doing so will be ill advised for the health of your soul as well.

In the meantime: web bots, have at this page.

The world it is a changin'. It probably wouldn't hurt the search engine returns any to add the Hudson River Museum & Gallery Guide one more time to this page.

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Postscript: 01/18/11 - possibly you are aware, the Sugar Loaf artists mentioned above remain (again), while another piece of crap magazine is gone (again).


this page last updated:
02/01/2015 10:38:52 PM

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