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The Dear Leader Does Marilyn at The Dunes in DC

Anyone who makes it out of North Korea in one piece, you kind of have to stand and applaud. Moreso, the cheers should maybe be a bit louder if the guy was once a court propaganda artist, tasked with gilding the reputation of the Great Leader, who escaped to the West and some greater semblance of freedom and is now devoting himself to composing and executing paintings that do things like, say, stick Kim Jong-il’s head on Marilyn Monroe’s body, in particular the version of Marilyn’s body where she’s trying to keep her dress from flying up over her head. This is the barest minimum of what Kim Jong-il deserves, but, considering that KJI recently and inadvertently proved that he is not, in fact, a god, this will have to do, and Song Byeok, who is one brave and resilient guy – the man survived a North Korean prison camp – gives it to the former Dear Leader, oh does he ever. The show, Song Byeok: Departure, is up at The Dunes through April 30. (FULL ARTICLE: Kriston Capps, Washington City Paper)