Making the invisible visible

Apologies for the drought of posts recently as it turns out you can have too much screen time. Although not officially square-eyed (as the old saying goes) I have been left dulled and parched of any interest in using computers following my long days researching and evenings spent on graduate applications. As such, I will keep this post short- or in other words, VISUAL.

The campaign below was for Amnesty to highlight the plight of death row inmates– their indecisive and suspensive fate, I think, cleverly represented by the partial transparancy of the fence. The image (a close-up of prisoner Troy Davis) is only visible when approaching from a certain angle, with plaques posted nearby used to direct passers-by to the Amnesty website. Here they can sign a petition calling for justice for Davis, who has spent the last 19 years in death row in Georgia for a crime that he claims he did not commit.

The campaign therefore is a striking mix of a poster and street art that quite literally stops people in the tracks- the lurid green being a case in point (indeed it may glow in the dark too), and the fences’ ‘bars’ symbolising those found in prison. The idea being that us Brits will be aware and subsequently shocked of capital punishment taking place across the Pond- no easy feat, as I believe that nationally we shirk from this form of confrontation and debate. Not exactly something I would want to deal with on the way to work, but neither would I enjoy the guilt of sending an innocent man to his death.

The campaign was created by by German street art collective Mentalgassi, in collaboration with agency Brothers and Sisters and its creative team, Lisa Jelliffe and Kirsten Rutherford. This photo was a series of many taken around London’s West End- again a strategic move as the site is busy, touristy and as a result- so much more controversial than if these were installations were in the East End. Plus given the Christmas timing of the campaign (December 2010), cheery Soho shoppers can feel even more festive guilt.. without a christmas pie in sight!


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