100 Years Of Propaganda: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

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Propaganda is most well known in the form of war posters. But at its core, it is a mode of communication aimed at influencing the attitude of a community toward some cause or position, and that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Although propaganda is often used to manipulate human emotions by displaying facts selectively, it can also be very effective at conveying messages and hence can be used in web design, too.

Notice that propaganda uses loaded messages to change the attitude toward the subject in the target audience. When applied to web design, you may experiment with techniques used in propaganda posters and use them creatively to achieve a unique and memorable design.

In this article, we look at various types of propaganda and the people behind it, people who are rarely seen next to their work. You will also see how the drive for propaganda shaped many of the modern art movements we see today. Notice that this post isn’t supposed to be an ultimate showcase of propaganda artists. Something or somebody is missing? Please let us know in the comments to this post!

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William Orpen: England, 1917

Orpen studied at the Slade School in London alongside the likes of Augustus John and Wyndham Lewis. He produced some of his best work while at the school and became known for his portraits. A friend of Orpen then arranged for him to paint the pictures of senior military officials, such as Lord Derby and Churchill. In 1917, he was recruited by the government’s head of War Propaganda to the Western front to paint images of war-torn France. It was there that Orpen painted his most famous piece, “Dead Germans in a Trench.”

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Dimitri Moor: Russia, 1917–1921

Dimitri Moor (or Dmitry Stakhievich Orlov) changed the face of graphic design in Soviet Russia back in 1918. His work dominated both the Bolshevik Era (1917–1921) and the New Economic Policy (1921–1927). The main theme of Moor’s work is the stark contrast between the oppressive evil and the heroic allies. A lot of pressure was put on Russian workers to rise up against imperialism.

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A lot of Moor’s artwork was restricted to black and red. Black was generally used for the main part of the poster, and all of the solid colors for the capitalists. Red was used for socialist elements such as flags and workers’ shirts.

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This is a lesser known poster by the artist, appealing for help for those staving from the Russian famine in 1920. It features the single word “Pomogi,” meaning help. The drawing is of an old man who is just skin and bone. The last stalks of barley are barely visible in the background.

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El Lissitzky: Russia, 1920

El Lissitzky spent his whole career absorbed by the belief that the artist could be an agent for change and good, and his work in a lot of respects shows this. He himself was a huge agent of change in the artistic movements of the time. He was one of the fathers of suprematism, along with Kazimir Malevich; and along with many of his peers, he changed the look of typography, exhibition design, photo montage and book cover design. Most of the modern techniques we see today and that appear in film and modern Kenetic typography are the product of Lissitzky’s work.

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Beat the Whites With the Red Wedge, 1920

One of his most famous pieces, shown below, really embodies Lissitzky’s work. It is so avant garde that even a lay person could recognize the style. The abstract geometric shapes and clear color pallet scream of modernist art, and yet the poster has a real message. It describes the Russian revolution that took place in 1917. The white circle represents the royalists from the old regime, and the red triangle represents the communists moving in and changing opinion. It has been described as a stylized battle plan for communist victory.

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You might also recognize it from Franz Ferdinand’s album cover:

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Then in 1921, El Lissitzky accepted a job as the Russian cultural ambassador to Germany. His work influenced a lot of the iconic designs of the Bauhaus and De Stijil movements. His last poster, seen below, was a return to propaganda, with a poster encouraging the Russian people to help Russia build more tanks to win the war against Nazi Germany.

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Strakhov Braslavskij: Russia, 1926

Braslavskij was known for his posters that promoted the emancipation of women. During this time in Russia, the idea of gender equality was growing. Emancipated women were seen to be supporters of the communist agenda, and so they needed to be freed from their so-called duties as wives and mothers.

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The emancipation of women and the socialist movement went pretty much hand in hand. In the poster below, we see almost a confluence of the sexes. The woman is drawn somewhat androgynously, wearing masculine clothing that hides her female figure, and a cold hard stare that hides her emotions. Behind her is her place of work, showing that women can do the same hard labor as men, and she carries the red flag of the communist movement.

The curious thing is that the image shows not so much the emancipation of women as it does a way to turn women into men, dressing them in men’s clothing, showing them as working in factories, and hiding their femininity. It seems the real reason to emancipate women was simply to increase the workforce and thus strengthen the communist movement.

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Hans Schweitzer: Germany, 1930s

In Germany in the 1930s, propaganda was in full swing and being used by Hitler’s advisers to call the German people to arms and spread lies about the Jews. One of the most famous artists behind Nazi propaganda was Hans Schweitzer, known as “Mjolnir.” This poster by Hans Schweitzer shows the typical pro-Nazi theme of the German army’s strength, depicting an S.A. man standing next to a solider. The text reads, “The guarantee of German military strength!”

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This next poster by Mjolnir, titled “Our Last Hope: Hitler” was used in the presidential elections of 1932, when Germany was suffering through its great depression. Nazi propagandists targeted the German people who were unemployed and living on the breadline, and they suggested Hitler as their way out, their savior.

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The propaganda then used the scapegoat of the Jews, blaming them for all of Germany’s problems and the war. Many posters were entitled, “He is guilty for the war.” This was the key message of Hitler to start his campaign of terror and for the ethnic cleansing that ensued. Almost the entire campaign from beginning to end was driven by the artist Mjolnir. Just as the media molds public opinion today, Mjolnir most definitely molded the opinion of the German people through his designs. There is no doubts about the immorality and emotional deception of these designs; they are still worth mentioning because they were extremely powerful and effective at the time.

Valentina Kulagina: Russia, 1930

Kulagina was one of the few female poster artists to emerge from the 20th century. Her art was heavily influenced by suprematism, and you can see the similarity between her work and that of El Lissitzky. This poster, called “To Defend USSR” was created by Kulagina in 1930. It takes a cubist perspective in its multi-dimensional shapes, and it shows the Red army as huge almost robotic figures, marching from the factories to fight the war. They are surrounded by the tiny white airplanes of the royalists, which appear to have no effect on them at all and in fact seem to be flying through the figures.

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Phillip Zec: England, 1930

Phillip Zec was probably best known for his depictions of Nazis as snakes and vultures. At the time, Nazis were usually drawn as bumbling clowns or buffoons. But Zec brought out the more sinister side of the German regime in his drawings. Hitler reportedly hated Zec so much that he added him to his black list and ordered his arrest following the invasion of Britain. He blamed Zec’s Jewish ancestry for his extreme ideas.

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This poster by Zec was a call for women to join the war effort by working in the munitions factories.

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This ugly toad is former Prime Minister of France Pierre Laval, who decided to work closely with the Nazi command during World War II.

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This illustration is about the French Resistance, telling Hitler that it was very much alive.

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Gino Boccasile: Italy, 1930

Gino Boccasile was a supporter of Benito Mussolini and produced a lot of propaganda for him. His posters became increasingly racist and anti-semitic as his support for the German puppet state increased. After the war, Boccasile was sent to prison for collaborating with the fascist regime. The only work he could find after his release from prison was as a pornographic artist and working in advertising for Paglieri cosmetics and Zenith footwear.

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He became well known for his advertising and pornography.

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Pablo Picasso: Spain, 1937

Picasso painted Guernica in response to the bombing of the town by Germany and Italy, which were following orders from Spanish Nationalist forces, on 26 April 1937. It must be said that it was commissioned to Picasso long before the bombing of the town und was supposed to be a classic painting first; after the bombings, Picasso changed his drawing to respond to the recent bombing. The giant mural shows the tragedy of war, using innocents civilians as the focal point. It became a huge symbol of anti-war, and upon completion it was exhibited worldwide to spread the message. The piece also educated other countries about the horror of the Spanish Civil War, which till then most people had never heard of.

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Norman Rockwell: US, 1939

Norman Rockwell is probably one of the best known of the propoganda movement. He admitted that he was just a propaganda stooge for the Saturday Evening Post. The newspaper paid many artists and illustrators to whitewash American news with patriotism and propaganda for around 50 years.

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His work has often been dismissed as idealistic or sentimental. His depiction of American life included young boys running away from a “No swimming” sign, and happy-go-lucky US citizens going about their business unaware of the crumbling world around them.

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Rockwell’s famous Rosie the Riveter poster is shown below, representing the American women who worked in the munitions and war supplies factories during World War II. This was a call to arms for the women of America to become strong capable females and support the war effort.

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J. Howard Miller’s “We Can Do It!,” commonly mistaken to depict Rosie the Riveter, conveyed the same message:

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Rockwell was always unhappy with the politics of the Saturday Evening Post, so in his later years, he took up the controversial subject of racism in America. He became respected as a painter for these hard-hitting pieces of American culture, much more so than for his work for the Saturday Evening Post. The piece below is called “The Problem We All Live With.” It is not known whether this painting is based solely on the Ruby Bridges story, because it was also thought that the idea came from John Steinbeck’s book Travels With Charley.

The subject was the integration of black children in American schools. Little Ruby Bridges was filmed making her way into the William Franz School at 8:40 am. At this time, a gigantic crowd of 150 white women and male youth had gathered. They threw tomatoes and shouted vile comments at the tiny girl. It is hard to look at this picture without being affected.

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Xu Ling: China, 1950

It is hard to find details on these Chinese artists, but we can focus on what they intended to convey with their artwork. This piece is a caricature of the American commander in Korea at that time, General MacArthur. It shows the US as an aborrent evil, and Macarthur is shown stabbing a Korean mother and child. Bombs labeled US are being dropped on cities in China in the background as the US invades Korea.

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Ye Shanlu (???): China, 1952

Again, little is known of the artist, but we do know this piece told people to get immunized against any epidemics to combat germ warfare. The Chinese were convinced that the US was planning to use bacterial weaponry against them, so they set about organizing massive inoculation drives to protect the Chinese people.

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Ning Hao: China, 1954

Along the lines of Rosie the Riveter, this Ning Hao piece reflects women being asked to work in the factories alongside men, partially to support their emancipation, but mostly to increase the labor force in China.

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Jim Fitzpatrick: Ireland, 1968

Jim Fitzpatrick was a well-known Irish Celtic artist of his time, but he is probably best known for his Che Guevara poster in 1968. It is said that Fitzpatrick took the death of the revolutionary personally. He had once met him when Guevara flew into Ireland in 1963 and checked into the Marine Hotel pub in Kilkee. Fitzpatrick was only a teenager at the time and had been working there over the summer. The poster became a global icon during the anti-Vietnam war protests and is now the symbol of F.A.R.C. in Columbia, a Marxist-Leninist revolutionary guerrilla organization, which is involved in the ongoing Colombian armed conflict. Zapatista Army of National Liberation (Ejército Zapatista de Liberación Nacional, EZLN), a revolutionary group based in Chiapas, the southernmost state of Mexico, uses this symbol as well.

The image was also used during the violent Paris student riots in 1968. Across the rest of the West, the Marxist Che Guevara image is overused by any kid suffering from teenage angst.

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Huynh Van Thuan: Vietnam, 1972

I could not find any information about Huynh Van Thuan, but I found this piece reminiscent of 1960s movie posters about the Vietnam war and so decided to include it.

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Micah Ian Wright: US, 2003

After Micah Wright graduated, he worked a while for Nickelodeon and wrote for The Angry Beavers cartoon. Then in 2003, just before the invasion of Iraq, Micah published his anti-war protest book. The book was filled with satires of old war propaganda posters that Micah had reprinted with modern war messages.

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Brian Lane Winfield Moore: US, 2009

Brain Moore is a modern propaganda artist who exhibits his work on his blog40. He lives in Brooklyn and is probably best known for his promotion of net neutrality and his work during the 2009 Iranian election protests. The posters are based on old WWII propaganda posters but updated in their message to match today’s technology and Web culture.

This poster was a comment on the 2009 Iran election protests. He borrowed the old “loose lips” refrain and replaced it with tweets.

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This next one was about the proposed Internet regulation that would supposedly curb illegal activities on the ‘net and help fight the “war on terror.”

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Unknown artist: UK, 2010

I could not identify the artist behind this one but had to include it for its clever use of old Tory values and the play on the Scooby Doo gang’s unveiling of the monster. The Tory party now occupies 10 Downing Street, and David Cameron is now Prime Minister of United Kingdom. This poster shows the lack of faith in Cameron’s promise to be a force for change and not just another Thatcher.

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Image credit: Von Pip46

Last Click

Nick Griffin is not an artist, he is the chairman of the British National Party (BNP). Just as most other national parties across the globe, BNP is a good example of propaganda techniques being used to produce an emotional rather than rational response to the information presented. BNP has used them to build their hate-filled ranks for years. BNP is extremely good at speaking to people in plain, emotional language and affecting those who experience personal problems and want to find someone who can be blamed for these problems.

Just like many other national parties, BNP is blaming foreigners for these problems and uses strong religious metaphors to deliver the message. Very powerful, yet extremely unethical. This is an example of propaganda being used to manipulate people in a very deceptive, unfair manner.

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(al)

Footnotes

  1. 1 http://contexts.org/socimages/files/2009/03/m-and-m-red-propaganda-poster1.jpg
  2. 2 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/7c/William_Orpen_photo_by_George_Charles_Beresford_1903.jpg
  3. 3 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/9/9c/Orpen%2C_Zonnebeke.jpg
  4. 4 http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_nJp7Zw1NXyM/SwLBMh-qddI/AAAAAAAADqs/7ednujvC6T0/s1600/dimitri-moor.jpg
  5. 5 http://russianlegacy.com/catalog/images/soviet_collection/postcards/C848.jpg
  6. 6 http://www.artukraine.com/famineart/images/moor.jpg
  7. 7 http://idology.files.wordpress.com/2009/04/el_lissitzky.jpg
  8. 8 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/5/5f/Artwork_by_El_Lissitzky_1919.jpg
  9. 9 http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_dTPtJCThggI/SQkIYEUomnI/AAAAAAAAAIY/7EtfOYEb-9U/s400/600px-Franz_Ferdinand_-_This_Fffire.jpg
  10. 10 http://news.brown.edu/files/article_images/LISSITZKY.jpg
  11. 11 http://kharkov.vbelous.net/english/artists/strakhov.htm
  12. 12 http://www.imow.org/community/viewImage?id=3234
  13. 13 http://www.calvin.edu/academic/cas/gpa/posters/garant.jpg
  14. 14 http://www.ushmm.org/propaganda/archive/poster-our-last-hope/
  15. 15 http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_NzHG4HjtdwI/R1cGLjq76YI/AAAAAAAAAYo/1pux1S_JjO4/s1600-h/Na_oboronu.jpg
  16. 16 http://www.camdennewjournal.co.uk/050505/images050505/f01-1.jpg
  17. 17 http://www.history.ac.uk/makinghistory/resources/articles/images/IWM4_WomenofBritain.JPG
  18. 18 http://goodcomics.comicbookresources.com/2008/10/18/stars-of-political-cartooning-philip-zec/
  19. 19 http://goodcomics.comicbookresources.com/2008/10/18/stars-of-political-cartooning-philip-zec/
  20. 20 http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_m2_YJYFcr3I/R1Hhn6J9kgI/AAAAAAAACrA/ZDJ2uv9tC-E/s1600-R/boccasile0tm9.jpg
  21. 21 http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_m2_YJYFcr3I/R1HhQqJ9kdI/AAAAAAAACqo/mNbP0_v8MEU/s1600-R/boccasile.jpg
  22. 22 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/8/81/OlioRaidino.jpg
  23. 23 http://www.posterclassics.com/Images-Products-Italian/bigBoccasileTalco.jpg
  24. 24 http://grahamnunn.files.wordpress.com/2009/10/pablo-picasso.jpg
  25. 25 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/7/74/PicassoGuernica.jpg
  26. 26 http://images.art.com/images/products/regular/15410000/15410829.jpg
  27. 27 http://www.artchive.com/artchive/r/rockwell/rockwell_swimming.jpg
  28. 28 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/0/02/RosieTheRiveter.jpg
  29. 29 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/12/We_Can_Do_It!.jpg
  30. 30 http://hubpages.com/hub/The-Problem-We-All-Live-With---Norman-Rockwell-the-truth-about-his-famous-painting
  31. 31 http://www.normanadams.org/assets/images/NR-BlackGirlCops-F.JPG
  32. 32 http://chineseposters.net/gallery/e27-169.php
  33. 33 http://chineseposters.net/gallery/e13-964.php
  34. 34 http://chineseposters.net/gallery/e16-17.php
  35. 35 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/a/a1/FitzpatrickChe.jpg
  36. 36 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/Picture-68.png
  37. 37 http://members.aye.net/~gharris/blog/reporter.jpg
  38. 38 http://www.sevenstories.com/Resources/titles/58322100481500/Images/58322100481500L.gif
  39. 39 http://www.mmaclaughlin.com/Album/MicahWright/slides/handcut.jpg
  40. 40 http://briiiiian.com/
  41. 41 http://briiiiian.com/wwiii-posters/#/images/gallery/wwiii_1.jpg
  42. 42 http://s-ak.buzzfed.com/static/imagebuzz/terminal01/2009/6/24/17/modern-wwii-propaganda-5685-1245880771-37.jpg
  43. 43 http://briiiiian.com/wwiii-posters/#/images/gallery/wwiii_4.jpg
  44. 44 http://briiiiian.com/
  45. 45 http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_TPPvQRKMMTY/S8xu507L1PI/AAAAAAAAALA/CR0kS5jCGBQ/s1600/THATCHER.jpg
  46. 46 http://vonpipmusicalexpress.wordpress.com
  47. 47 http://images.mirror.co.uk/upl/m4/apr2010/5/6/nick-griffin-pic-reuters-image-2-252500255.jpg
  48. 48 http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3366/3551125675_a5a1aac531.jpg
  49. 49 http://unfinishedchristian.files.wordpress.com/2009/04/bnp-poster.jpg

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  1. 1

    That last picture is too sad to be true, oh well… Very nice article, some awesome historical pieces aswell.

    2
  2. 52

    Really enjoyed this post! I love old 50-60 posters. Here’s a small collection from Hungarian communist propaganda posters from the post WWII years.

    By the way I found it interesting, that while the propaganda works of totalitarian regimes such as the Nazis and CCCP are real works of art and still inspire people today (even if they served a wrong cause), the propaganda of current radical political movements such as the BNP or far-right parties here in Hungary and the rest of Europe are artisticly worthless and dull.
    The fact that these parties can sell their ideas with such crappy design leds me to believe that a the visual taste of the avrage layman has dropped greatly since the ’50-s, even if they say that design has a greater impact on our lives than ever.

    1
  3. 103

    Whoops forgot the link: http://www.civertan.hu/legifoto/legifoto.php?page_level=1181 :) Check them out! Mostly post war election posters of the Hungarian Communist Party.

    1
  4. 154

    What exactly is Gino Boccasile’s first poster tying to say?

    “Defend Italy from Jews, Communists and Freemasons!?”

    Interesting.

    -1
  5. 205

    From a design point of view, awesome stuff. I love historical posters, and these are great – even though you missed a couple iconic ones, such as the Jew counting his money etc.

    From a political/societal point of view: WHAT?!
    You managed to display a slight admiration for nearly every communist/Marxist design’s POLITICAL BACKGROUND, and managed to say this about the BNP: “BNP has used them to build their hate-filled ranks for years. BNP is extremely good at speaking to people in plain, emotional language and affecting those who experience personal problems and want to find someone who can be blamed for these problems.” Following this argument, BNP’s voters have personal problems and want to find someone to blaim for their issues. Huh?? Let me make one thing clear – I would never vote BNP (partially because I am not British) or a similar party. However, on a DESIGN blog?!
    To make matters worse, here’s what you said about the Jew posters pre WW2: “Many posters were entitled, “He is guilty for the war.” This was the key message of Hitler to start his campaign of terror and for the ethnic cleansing that ensued. (…) There is no doubts about the immorality and emotional deception of these designs; they are still worth mentioning because they were extremely powerful and effective at the time.”

    If you’re gonna talk about hatred, you can start with the real atrocities – the FARC guerilla, Hitler, Mussolini, the Iranian government, Stalin, Al-Quaida etc. As far as I know, the BNP has yet to kill anyone, abduct people or blow up subways in foreign countries.

    2
  6. 256

    Jim Fitzpatrick Che’s Poster is based on “GUERRILLERO HEROICO” an Alberto Korda photo.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guerrillero_Heroico

    -1
  7. 307

    Great article – reblogged it on my own Propaganda art website:
    vnpropaganda.com/

    -1
  8. 358

    In truth, effective and true propaganda is only recognizable retrospectively. If you are a member of the targeted group and recognize it as propaganda, then it has missed its mark. True propaganda should elicit an emotional, visceral, almost autonomic response, making one mindlessly get swept up in and fervently support the cause that it is advancing. A lot of what people recognize as propaganda today is merely a rehashing of old, often-cliched and out-dated propaganda methods or at best, good promotion and target marketing.

    -1
  9. 409

    For those in Barcelona don’t miss this exhibition of past and PRESENT graphic propaganda from North Corea: http://bit.ly/amQv09

    -1
  10. 460

    Guernica: Historians and art critics generally see this work as Picasso’s anti war painting, rather than supporting the communists. It should be remembered that the work was completed in 1937, pre Blitz (bombing of London and other UK cities, resulting in approx 16,000 civilian deaths) and pre Holocaust.
    Civilians had not generally been a target in war before the Luftwaffe attacked Guernica. Many see the anti war connotations of the work as the reason for the tapestry replica in the UN building being covered for Powell’s announcement of the bombing of Iraq in Feb 2003. It is true that Picasso had used many of the motifs in Guernica before, but this makes their use more poignant in this work.

    -1
  11. 511

    The BNP used stock photography for their campaign – and the models weren’t best pleased when they found out.

    This was a really interesting post, thank you.

    0
  12. 562

    Stephanie Rexroth

    June 21, 2010 1:09 pm

    Don’t forget about the modern day US-paranoia at work in these posters — typically found at international airports:
    “If you see something say something”
    http://blogofbile.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/01/18/dont-forget-that-guy-standing-next-to-you-could-be-a-terrorist/if_you_see_something_say_something.jpg

    -1
  13. 613

    Font on first poster («The revolution is now!») is ugly. At least for whom native language is Russian.

    0
  14. 664

    Wonkey the Monkey

    June 22, 2010 3:15 am

    Do Wright and Moore really belong in this article? I’m not so sure I would call their work “propaganda” at all.

    Wright’s approach was to:
    1.) remix existing propaganda artwork with new text rather than creating new artwork, and
    2.) create images with the intent that viewers would immediately recognize and reject the explicit propaganda contained within them.

    Moore’s are even less creative, simply re-casting more famous propaganda designs and insert modern jargon into them. What exactly do they mean? Who are they supposed to influence? Is he saying that tweeting and blogging was harmful to the protesters? Or is it supposed to be a rejection of propaganda, suggesting that only evil empires fear tweets and blogs and the like? If so, the choice of source material is questionable because the message communicated by the original posters (never share military secrets with pretty girls and drinking buddies) was quite rational and fair at the time.

    Certainly I would hesitate to call either creator a propagandist OR a designer. They’d be better described as satirists, or in the case of Moore, parodists.

    1
  15. 715

    You have some mess in information. Strakhov’s name is Adolf, Adolf Strakhov. Braslavskij is his second, alternative surname. And on the photo it’s a bust of famous ukrainian poet, writer and artist Taras Shevchenko made by Adolf Strakhov (when reading an article it looks like it’s a bust of Strakhov himself).

    0
  16. 766

    Hi,

    here you can see a recopilatory of posters of war propaganda:

    http://www.iccc.es/2006/09/carteles-de-propaganda/

    Enjoy it.

    0
  17. 817

    I can’t believe Smashing Magazine showcased the ‘work’ of Brian Lane Winfield Moore and Micah Ian Wright. They are shallow attempts at creativity at the expense of other artists’ toil. Anyone can cop another creative’s blood, sweat, heart and soul and re-purpose it without hardly lifting their sophomoric finger.

    They are not designers. They are not propagandists. They are thieves without their own raw talents upon which to build strong, unique, original creative to communicate a contemporary message. The truest indication of the unequaled talents of their predecessors is that they stole their predecessors’ work for their own creative gain. This work is transparent to the educated creative, and is immediately discredited as plagiarism and looked upon with disdain.

    If you’re unable to envision and execute your own creative work, you should find another profession. I hope Smashing Magazine uses more discretion in the future when posting pieces of this nature.

    -1
    • 868

      @ J. I consider myself to be educated and creative. I am an artist and am in my final year of art college. Though your point about the work being copied is undeniably true I do not feel, as do many of my peers that this is necessarily a bad thing. It was not the artists intention to claim the work as their own, which is what plagiarism is, (to claim anothers work as ones own). These posters are clearly an homage to a famous era and style with a satirical twist to modernise them. The artists ask the question how would they have looked if the internet was around back then. They are making a statement about modern communication and the availability of information and using famous works which warn against such things as a tool to highlight the use of social media and the internet in the spreading of secrets. If you don’t get that ????

      2
  18. 919

    My name is Lindsay Moore and I am currently a grade twelve student in Calgary, Alberta. For one of our International Baccalaureate projects this year my group must create a documentary about the Iron Curtain and liberalism. I was wondering if my group could use some of the information and the photos on your website for our documentary. If yes, please contact me by email as soon as possible!
    Thank you for your time!

    L.Moore

    0
  19. 970

    Interesting mix here, I would add some of the more interesting uses of propaganda that expose the concept of propoganda itself such as the work by The Electronic Brain Turf Consortium. Exploitation is used at almost every level of soiety and is nearly always for greed/power/money. It’s scary how obvious what they are doing is once you get what’s going on – it’s even scarier knowing that this kind of stuff works on the masses

    0
  20. 1021

    “Everybody points fingers at the Nazis for the Holocaust, but I don’t recall that much anybody complaining about the almost “heroic” dropping of two atomic bombs by the USA on Japanese civilian population.” -Mosh

    that’s the most absurd thing I’ve ever read.

    1

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