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Santa Cop


The justice system seeks to reduce all possibilities to a single incontestable truth. Myth and art do the opposite; superposition is their norm. Santa Cop was born in the gap between the two. With his catchphrase "Obey the law or you won't get any presents!" he is a shamanic incarnation of universal right.

Santa Cop Prepares the Turkey (1999)

Santa Cop was particularly active around Christmas 1999. On Christmas Night of that year he stood at the entrance of the National Assembly for Wales in order to protect democracy (er mwyn diogelu democratiaeth). A member of the South Wales Police was called and for a while the two officers of the law sat side-by-side in a patrol car while one threatened to arrest the other for breach of the peace.

In November 2001 Santa Cop presented A Seminar on Art and Law with Santa Cop at Chapter Arts in Cardiff. This multimedia performance lecture asked the question "Can a policeman ever be an artist?" Artists examined included Kiran Bedi, who won the Joseph Beuys Prize for her work as a police chief and prison governor, and a sheriff's deputy from Arizona who had published some images of Osama Bin Laden. During the presentation Santa Cop made a sculptural construction out of doughnuts.

Silent Night (1999)