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“Slaves ‘R’ Us” : Advertising, Propaganda, and SEBS in Lisbon

Posted on January 24, 2015

The power of advertising and propaganda is undisputed, whether it is for toothpaste or war. We are being acted upon daily by people who would like us to do (or not do) something.  Usually it is to give money for a product or service, but more than ever it is to stand by and allow bombs to fall or laws to be eroded.

Artists have been parodying the methods of advertisement and our willingness to be swayed by it almost since it began, perhaps as a way of alerting us of the deleterious effects of unthinking consumerism in general, or to give us the tools to comprehend and analyze the methods that are effectively driving our behavior.  Invariably, our actions as individuals, citizens, and consumers are all folded into the critique.

 
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SEBS, or Mauro Carmelino in Lisbon, Portugal. (photo © Mauro Carmelino)

But whether it is the illustrated stickers of Wacky Packages  or the cereal killers and billboard takeovers of Ron English, many artists have found that humor and irony are effective ways to sweeten the lampoon of advertisers and our complicity – a spoonful of sugar to help the medicine go down, as Mary Poppins sang.

Street Artist Mauro Carmelino, who writes SEBS as his moniker, recently completed an entire campaign of his own that questions many things we do and wonders if we are even aware of the lines between citizenry and consumerism we traverse these days.

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SEBS, or Mauro Carmelino in Lisbon, Portugal. (photo © Mauro Carmelino)

Entitled “Slaves ‘R’ Us”, this series of handmade works are on the walls of Ajuda, a civil parish in the municipality of Lisbon, Portugal. Bright and simple designs that are cheerful enough, even if they belie a less pleasant series of questions for pondering.

“Democracy, the environment, freedom, security, employment and corporatism are all portrayed as products of a ‘Progress’ that seems to reach the expiration date,” he says as he describes the various elements in the campaign. In Carmelino’s view, our free will is seriously in question today.  “We look back to past societies and feel we came a long way. Did we? Are we free when all our lives can be crunched into zeros and ones, somewhere on a server in California?”

The work looks welcoming and cartoonish on these aged walls and buildings, and if the artists intentions are realized, his greater messages will have an affect on the mind of the viewer. It helps that some of the locations of the walls provides a bit of context, like the silo-shaped building that has a warning about cow milk, “Some of these are inspired by the personal stories of people or are somehow related to the intervened walls,” says the artist.

Special thanks to the artist for providing these exclusive photos for BSA readers.

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SEBS, or Mauro Carmelino in Lisbon, Portugal. (photo © Mauro Carmelino)

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SEBS, or Mauro Carmelino in Lisbon, Portugal. (photo © Mauro Carmelino)

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SEBS, or Mauro Carmelino in Lisbon, Portugal. (photo © Mauro Carmelino)

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SEBS, or Mauro Carmelino in Lisbon, Portugal. (photo © Mauro Carmelino)

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SEBS, or Mauro Carmelino in Lisbon, Portugal. (photo © Mauro Carmelino)

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SEBS, or Mauro Carmelino in Lisbon, Portugal. (photo © Mauro Carmelino)

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SEBS, or Mauro Carmelino in Lisbon, Portugal. (photo © Mauro Carmelino)

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SEBS, or Mauro Carmelino in Lisbon, Portugal. (photo © Mauro Carmelino)

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SEBS, or Mauro Carmelino in Lisbon, Portugal. (photo © Mauro Carmelino)

 

 

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Please note: All content including images and text are © BrooklynStreetArt.com, unless otherwise noted. We like sharing BSA content for non-commercial purposes as long as you credit the photographer(s) and BSA, include a link to the original article URL and do not remove the photographer’s name from the .jpg file. Otherwise, please refrain from re-posting. Thanks!

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BSA Film Friday: 01.23.15

Posted on January 23, 2015

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Our weekly focus on the moving image and art in the streets. And other oddities.

Now screening :

1. Narcelio Grud Mixes Cement and Sprays It
2. BIKISMO Chrome Dog in Wynwood
3. Horfée on a Roof Top in Paris:
4. Graff ADOR – DOOM – DOOM
5. HEGO: Magnetic Street Art in Sydney

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BSA Special Feature: Narcelio Grud Mixes Cement and Sprays It

Narcelio Grud and “Chaupixo” brings us back into the inventive mind of this experimenter – now hand pumping a slurry of colored concrete over a stencil pattern. The results are solid!

 

BIKISMO Chrome Dog in Wynwood via TOSTFILMS

Yo Dog! Did you catch this big silvery one by Bikismo this year at the Jose De Diego middle school? So fresh, so real!

Check out MTO and “The Wynwood Family” from earlier this week on BSA.

 

Horfée’s Roof Top in Paris:

Graff writer as illustrator using a plain black aerosol spray the way another artist uses brush and ink or marker. It’s a purposeful unveiling of the image on this Parisian rooftop that reveals a slumping pileup of forms and misshapen exasperation that ranks Horfée as one of the best. Check out the nimble can control and ease of line. Oof!

 

Graff ADOR – DOOM – DOOM

Graffitist and prolific illustrator Ador uses the side of this building for a short animation which we cannot understand but may remind you of your childhood if your father was an angry drunk.

 

HEGO: Magnetic Street Art

Some people just have that touch, that magnetism about them. Same goes with art in the streets. Sydney based HEGO shows and tells about his personal street art project that encourages people to pick it up and re-display it somewhere else in the city.

Fra. Biancoshock Tags “Toy” in Milan

Posted on January 22, 2015

Maybe it’s just us, but Milan-based Fra. Biancoshock appears to deliberately flummox and beguile with his public interventions and performances: messing with security cameras, staging public funerals for countries with actors and a coffin, installing “flying garbage” bags near sidewalk cafes, providing sheets of bubble wrap for you to pop while waiting for the bus, installing a closed loop red carpet in a public square, and of course painting a large swastika made of Facebook logos.

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Fra Biancoshock. “Pulpits” Italy. January 2015. (photo © courtesy of Fra Biancoshock)

Today we find him openly dissing a graffiti writer’s work with a stencil, violating at least a few street “rules” that would seem to cross most national boundaries as they pertain to the Street Art and graffiti continuum.

  1. he goes directly on top of someone else’s work

  2. he calls them a name that means they have no style and do subpar work, among many additional interpretations

  3. he exacerbates the much discussed beef on the street in many cities between some graffiti writers and Street Artists – by putting a stencil directly on top of an aerosol piece.

Does Fra. Biancoshock have an explanation aside from wanting to get himself into a fight? He presents his action as a sociology experiment whereby he puts a spotlight on subcultural conventions that are being caught in a seachange of definitions, roles, and meaning thanks to a flooding of new participants onto the street – and that dang Internet that continues to rock and re-form so many scenes.

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Fra Biancoshock. “Pulpits” Italy. January 2015. (photo © courtesy of Fra Biancoshock)

“I know that this work can be misunderstood and that many people/artists may get angry about this work and its direct message,” he says. “For me this is just a provocative action which emphasizes that we are currently in a period of confusion between graffiti, stencil, muralism, street art and more. People entering the conversation are making false equations between these disciplines, and there are a lot of uniformed and competitive attitudes coming into play. In my opinion graffiti is graffiti, stencils are stencils and there is not war between methods because they are two different worlds, and graffiti does not belong to the same world as street art so there is no need to equate the two.”

“And now people are loving murals because they are pretty, because they decorate buildings. But most of these people don’t realize that much of today’s mural scene is a consequence of a previous period of graffiti – in fact every stencil or muralist is born thanks to the graffiti world. Ironically, graffiti is not a vogue right now; it’s vandalism, it’s for toys.”

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Fra Biancoshock. “Pulpits” Italy. January 2015. (photo © courtesy of Fra Biancoshock)

While you may agree with many of his points, it is hard to explain how this direct cross-out of another guys work is acceptable. We think he means to capture an attitude that he sees and to critique it – namely he wants to illustrate a false battle that denigrates graffiti writing and elevates Street Art.

And for the record, he says that doesn’t know Falt, the writer he has just gone over.

“So, I want to emphasize my personal apology to Falt for creating this piece without permission…I don’t know Falt. I simply found his piece in an abandoned area and I decided to make my intervention on it. I don’t consider Falt a toy and I don’t consider anyone a toy actually because I think that is not important what the style of letters or the location of the graffiti. I appreciate them all because I think that every graffiti piece is a moment of communication. Excuse me Falt!”

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Fra Biancoshock. “Pulpits” Italy. January 2015. (photo © courtesy of Fra Biancoshock)

 

We hope that clears things up, but it probably doesn’t. Stay tuned to see if Fra. Biancoshock gets his head smacked by a writer who does not care for his conceptual ideation.

 

 

<<>>><><<>BSA<<>>><<<>><><BSA<<>>><><<>BSA<<>>><<<>><><BSA

Please note: All content including images and text are © BrooklynStreetArt.com, unless otherwise noted. We like sharing BSA content for non-commercial purposes as long as you credit the photographer(s) and BSA, include a link to the original article URL and do not remove the photographer’s name from the .jpg file. Otherwise, please refrain from re-posting. Thanks!

<<>>><><<>BSA<<>>><<<>><><BSA<<>>><><<>BSA<<>>><<<>><><BSA

 

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