It’s a free country, and if Barack Obama’s campaign wants to make money from posters ($70 a pop!) designed by the artist Shepard Fairey, they can go right ahead. (The candidate himself thanked the artist, and said that his “images have a profound affect on people, whether seen in a gallery or on a stop sign.” You know, because they’re put on stickers and posted all over public property.)
And I’m sure I’ll be told that the artist uses Communist propaganda imagery in an ironic way, or a satirical way, or in a way of making a pro-freedom political statement that I’m too obtuse to get.
It’s not even that I don’t like the style of his art– I was surprised to see he did this very striking poster for the movie “Walk the Line” which became the DVD cover.
But I can’t help but wonder if it wise for a campaign to use an Obama poster that seems so stylistically similar to Fairey’s posters that feature Stalin and Lenin, Saddam Hussein, Stalin and his cabinet, Stalin and Lenin again, and again, and Mao, Lenin again, Stalin again, Mao again…
Like with the Che flag in the Texas office, doesn’t it seem a little odd that nobody around the people making this decision took a moment to say, “uh, guys, are we sure this is the image we want to associate with our candidate?”
Paging Jonah Goldberg.