These works, comprised of circles of varying sizes and small plastic googly eyes, appear to the naked eye to be nothing more than an abstract composition. Looking at the work through the lens of a smartphone, however, reveals the face of Osama bin Laden, the al-Qaeda leader who claimed responsibility for the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Coupland offers the viewer the choice to ignore or actively see this contemporary figure.

The twenty-first century has been shaped by many events but in Coupland's view perhaps most profoundly by the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, environmental degradation and the ubiquitous presence of new technologies. Coupland comments on the darker side of today's world through installations and paintings that are often enhanced by viewing through smartphone technology.


  • Title: Jumbo Boogeyman in the Sky with Diamonds
  • Creator: Douglas Coupland
  • Date: 2013
  • Physical Dimensions: w122 x h168 cm
  • Exhibition section: The 21st Century Condition
  • Credit line: Private Collection
  • Type: print
  • Medium: gloss laminated ink jet print mounted on aluminum, cubic zirconias

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