Made by Stephen He

The greatest challenge we face today is the problem of global climate change. By mimicking Banksy's "Rage, Flower Thrower", I want to emphasize the fragility of our Earth and the potential consequences of our actions.

Created: September 8th, 2016




Instead of working off of Andy Warhol, I wanted to incorporate Banksy's unique graffiti art style into my work. Still focused on Earth and global warming, I wanted to emphasize humanity's passiveness in regards to saving our planet. While global warming is unanimously agreed upon by the scientific community, many people in positions of power express a lack of concern. I wanted to make a statement about how our passiveness is actively hurting our home. I found Banksy's art style to be particularly powerful in promoting social messages. As a result, I wanted to adopt his style. 

The intent of the project is to demonstrate the reality of global warming and emphasize our own passiveness in regards to it. My goal is to spread awareness about global warming and encourage people to not be passive. 


I want to underline two things in my project: the beauty and preciousness of Earth, and the fragility of Earth in the face of human actions. To underline the beauty of Earth, I want to model Earth using the pop art style Andy Warhol used to to create his famous Mao and Marilyn Monroe paintings. 


To underline the fragility of Earth, I want to do something similar to Andy Warhol's "Marilyn Diptych". Juxtaposing colorful renditions of Earth with a dark and disorganized rendition of Earth will hopefully emphasize Earth's mortality and susceptibility to human pollution. 

Marilyn Diptych :



Banksy was my primary inspiration. In particular, I drew direct parallels from his work "Rage, Flower Thrower". 

"Rage, Flower Thrower" :

I particularly admired the contrast between the black and white man and the colorful flowers. The color served as a way for Banksy to draw in the viewers attention to the apparent "out of place" item in the art. Likewise, I left the Earth in color because I wanted to emphasize the way humans are "burning" the Earth. 

Banksy's grafitti work was meant to placed on publicly visible surfaces. By imitating his style, my artwork is also adaptable to many surfaces - ie stickers on laptops or bottles, posters on walls, etc. This way, the message about global warming has potential to spread far and wide. 



I approached the exercise by first imagining a common scene, then asking myself how I could subvert people's expectations about that scene by adding and removing an item. I did this multiple times until I settled on the campfire scene. 

In designing this project, I had to choose where to place the earth and what to leave in color. I initially placed the Earth within the fire, but I realized that that was not Banksy's style. It would be too straightforward and simple of an imagery for global warming. Neither was it particularly eye pleasing. Ultimately, I placed the Earth on the person's marshmallow stick to emphasize our responsibility and blame in global warming, and underline our passive acceptance of it. 

Additionally, I had to choose what to leave in color. Initially I wanted to emphasize the fire. However, I realized that to fit  Banksy's style and also to keep in the theme of global warming, I had to emphasize Earth over the fire. The Earth is the item "out of place", so it made sense to color that. 



I created a graffiti style artwork of a man roasting the Earth over a campfire. Everything but the Earth was in black and white. I edited the photos and compiled them together in Photoshop. 

I followed Banksy's style of graffiti. In particular, I drew inspiration from "Rage, Flower Thrower". I attempted to take a common scene and subvert it with a political and social message- In this case, I emphasized the idea of global warming. 



I believe I was successful in incorporating Banksy's art style and also underlining the theme of global warming. Although not as eye pleasing as Banksy, my work still incorporates black and white scenes with a splash of color to draw in the viewers eyes. I also think that placing Earth as the marshmallow was a clever way to emphasize how we are complicit in global warming. It also underlines passivity because the person is just waiting for Earth to be cooked. 

One thing I would like to work on is how to emphasize Earth even further. Due to it's size, people may or may not understand what it is until a closer look. I want it to be immediately recognizable. 


Personal Reflection

I learned a valuable lesson on the iterative nature of art. I changed ideas and inspirations mid-way through this project to promote the same message, and I'm glad I did. My current art work demonstrates what I wanted in a better way than I could have if I stubbornly refused to adjust my plan. 

If I had more time, I would try to create a model of a man on my own. In this project, I heavily edited a photo of a man to get the desirous look, but I feel like I could emulate Banksy's style more closely with a self drawing. 

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The greatest challenge we face today is the problem of global climate change. By mimicking Banksy's "Rage, Flower Thrower", I want to emphasize the fragility of our Earth and the potential consequences of our actions.