Friday, December 16, 2011

Only In America

Image credit: Various artists

Well, maybe other countries could have come up with this sort of thing, but it's really just our style:
A new Occupy Wall Street-related art project: the "Police Brutality Coloring Book." The copy states explicitly that it's "not for kids." The description continues:

"This is an art project/zine. 46 contemporary artists have contributed drawings in response to the recent wave of excessive force used by the police in U.S. cities."

The list of artists includes big names like Shepard Fairey (who caught some flak for his Occupy poster and did the art for Time Magazine's Person of the Year issue for "The Protester") and Quel Beast.

Shepard Fairey is also famous for this poster:

Image credit: Shepard Fairey/Wikipedia

Which, with the Obama Administration's efforts to coordinate all the beatdowns of Occupy movements lately, is something I find to be rich in irony. Apparently, so does Shepard Fairey, as his defense of a more recent variation on that theme has shown:
Caption: The version of Shepard Fairey's "Occupy Hope" poster that some Occupy members were complaining about. Fairey later altered the poster, as can be seen at the quote credit link.

I have zero contact with the Obama campaign. I am disappointed with many aspects of Obama's presidency and I am far from an unconditional Obama supporter. The round logo I made is not Obama's O logo. His O uses curved stripes and a white sun. The stripes in my 99% logo are straight. I saw my 99% logo as subverting his logo more than amplifying it. I wanted a patriotic frame for the 99% logo to assert that the Occupy movement IS patriotic. The use of the word HOPE is more saying that Occupy is the greatest Hope we now have, but it would be great if Occupy pushed Obama in the right direction.

Shepard Fairey Changes Unpopular 'Occupy Hope' Poster Under Pressure
Speaking of irony, what other country can honestly say that they've put so much money and effort into making police forces so well armed and so isolated from the people they do the things that are no doubt described in this book, and can also create a group of artists who are willing to chronicle the end product of that process in all its ugly detail?

I can't really recommend this book, because I haven't seen any of the art, even after poking around on the Internet for awhile. I can, however, observe that there is plenty of material out there, a fact that many of us have been documenting for some time.


Paul Sunstone said...

I just HOPE Shepard Fairey's new poster gets as much mileage as his Obama poster. But I doubt it does. Something tells me it won't go viral.

Cujo359 said...

It probably won't, but if I ever have a reason to be optimistic about what's going on with the Occupy movements, I have a poster.