The Museum of Airplane Safety Cards

The best airline-safety-card artists know how to amplify these details without creating too much noise. They are, after all, artists. They work within and bend the conventions of their form by playing with allusions to earlier work. Take, for example, a current US Airways safety card that portrays the conventional water flotation scene. We see a beautiful woman, with lush red hair, floating effortlessly, gazing ahead in an attitude of easeful melancholy.

As Avi Steinberg’s plane crashed down, he thought, well isn’t that “Dante Rossetti’s 1877 Mary Magdalene, with perhaps an ironic nod to Botticelli’s Venus, as the heroine of our worst-case scenario”? Something to think about this holiday travel season.

[Thanks, Nicole!]