Show and Tell


This image is an example of Banksy appropriating an iconic brand and using it to show his message on the negative side of capitalism. In summary Banksy suggests that large corporations are manipulating the public through advertising to force people to consume products. He then advocates that the people should be able to modify advertising as it is on public property and we have no choice whether we view it or not. I partly agree with his statement as advertising can be used to prey on people’s vulnerabilities, making people feel inadequate if they don’t have a certain product. This of course is not the case. Materialism is a result of a constant consummation and disposal of goods that have no real value. Products have no value in the larger picture, what people really want is a feeling of belonging. However, I do not believe in modifying or appropriating brands or adverts that are in the public view. In the commercial world we live in being surrounded by advertising is common and an everyday experience and I do not approve of vandalism. Overall, I do approve of aspects of Banksy’s argument but not to the extreme extent that he describes.

This painting is a good example of modernist art. Cubism focuses on drawing an object from multiple perspectives and combining these angles into one image. This is also the case with the symbolism behind the painting. There are multiple ways to interpret this image.

Picasso uses the Bull throughout his work. This may partially be due to living in Spain and his passion for bull fighting. However, on a more metaphorical level the bull could represent himself. This could be an interpretation of masculine power and strength. Possibly linking to Picasso’s toxic relationships with women. On the other hand, the contorted body of the bull suggests struggling and pain as it is killed. This could be interpreted as the struggle of the Spanish people during the civil war. The bull in this analogy represents the working people who are being killed by the Nationalists. The painting could be Picasso’s expression of the fascism and cruelty experienced by the Spanish people.

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