Published Nov 22, 2011Following a PR blunder that found Jay-Z's Rocawear mass-producing and selling a T-shirt based on Occupy Wall Street but not sharing the profits with the movement, the rapper has now been immortalized through a greed-inspired statue.
XXL points out that New York-based sculptor Daniel Edwards, whose past work included a nude statue of Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez, recently unveiled his new piece, "The Scrooge Totem Pole," which stacks cartoon millionaires Mr. Burns, Scrooge McDuck and Richie Rich on top of Jigga's crown. Aligning Jay-Z with the one percent, Edwards also has the rapper sporting a slew of chains in the piece.
"I think Jay-Z has made himself a face of [the] Wall Street that Occupiers are protesting against," Edwards explained of his rationale behind his artwork. "Maybe Jay-Z is striving to be in the one percent? Which is why I chose the composition of a totem pole because I thought it would resemble the number one. Rap stars who turn 'Scrooge' have to suffer some damage to their street credibility."
Jay-Z may have removed the "Occupy All Streets" design from the marketplace, but the damage apparently has already been done. That said, Def Jam founder Russell Simmons has gone on the defensive for Hova, claiming the clothing item worked as it was done to further the message of the Occupy movement.
"What's wrong with selling goodness?" Simmons asked Billboard. "There's nothing wrong with it... You should sell things you're happy about... Jay-Z didn't make a T-shirt [that said] "F-- the Bums on the Street." He wrote a T-shirt 'Occupy All Streets' -- I'm happy, it furthers the movement, it inspires the movement.
"No one's against business. We're against business having too much control over our government."