You know those annoying LA street artists who popped up after Mr. Brainwash’s story in Exit Through the Gift Shop inspired everyone in that city who wasn’t starring in a film (and some who are) to start putting up posters and stickers? Well, some of them do have at least one redeemable quality: They disrupt advertisements. And that’s what Cyrcle and a few others talk about in this film for Pharrell’s YouTube channel i am OTHER. In terms of info about the ridiculous mural law battles in LA, it’s not a bad piece (although there’s no appearance from Saber, this in only part one of the story). Just try to ignore all the cheesiness from the artists.
Desire Obtain Cherish recently started a new campaign of anti-billboard pieces using the slogan “Is This Illegal?” which points out that LA is overrun with unlicensed advertising and that street artists who go over billboards can face felony charges even though the billboards themselves are often illegal to begin with. So far, the group has hit up at least one full-sized billboard and some street-level advertising.
When watching this video of their billboard takeover, please ignore the general cheesiness of the video, as the text at the end is actually quite informative:
Benjamin Alejandro has also used the “Is This Illegal?” slogan in a takeover featuring his own work:
Once the issue of the mural moratorium in LA is more or less fixed (should be soon), maybe “Is This Illegal?” will become the new slogan of LA’s outdoor art community and the disruption of illegal advertising will become their new political cause. One can dream…
This billboard takeover in Hollywood is nearly perfect. Effective as a billboard takeover for the anti-consumerism, the use of a perfect “Big Brothter-y” image and for completely removing the original text on the billboard. Plus, and here’s the kicker, the artists call themselves Desire Obtain Cherish, so, if you’re in on it, it’s a bit of an ad for them too, but if you’re not (and I’m guess most people are not), it’s just a takeover.