Photos from Hypebeast of the Shepard Fairey X SABER mural collaboration on Melrose Ave., Los Angeles, CA.
America is in a tense mood these days, what with midterm elections tomorrow, the economy in turmoil, and the environment and oil spills of major concern. Leave it to graffiti and street artists to get the message out, each with their own particular culture jamming styles.
Close-up of the Shepard Fairey portion of the mural.
Close-up of SABER%uFFFDs portion of the mural.
First, there’s Shepard Fairey and SABER’s American flag collaboration with two giant flags in a powerful mural piece on Melrose Ave. in Los Angeles. The mural includes each artist’s interpretation of the flag and meanings of activism. In many ways, like Jon Stewart%uFFFDs “Rally for Sanity,” it inspires people to get active, vote, and make a difference.
Second, is street artist Cesar Maxit in conjuntion with Rain Forest Action and their TheYesMen.org video that’s a pure, authentic culture jam of Chevron’s latest “We Agree” campaign. Using video and wheatpasting as the tool and message, it beats Chevron to the punch in D.C. by re-interpreting their billboard ads.
Chevron’s ads are statements and images of “normal” people saying “we agree” to a variety of things that Chevron is supposedly doing in an attempt to try and send the message that they “care” and are different from other oil companies. (It’s also a jab at Prop 23, which if passed would harm California’s movement towards a greener economy and green-related jobs.) Cesar was actually asked by Chevron’s advertising agency to send in samples of his work, proving yet again how corporations have engaged many street artists in advertising as a way to gain cred with youth culture.
Instead, the artist has taken the ads and repurposed them in a way that unmasks the disguise of the entire campaign, also called “We Agree.” Using new media and getting the viral video out on YouTube, plus engaging Twitter hashtags (#weagree), they’ve beaten Chevron to the punch and pulled off a stunt that frankly, only a street artist could do.
In addition, the Cesar and Rain Forest Action provides ways that you, too, can make your own Chevron “ad re-mix” and download raw files at www.theyesmen.org/weagree or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.