Pop culture

Pop culture

Tree mosaics, one story. The three pictures are like a three frame comic strip and tell a story.

If you look closely at the tiles, I’m sure you’ll be able to figure out what’s the message here. If not, see below.

The whole creation consists of three individual mosaics. All the tiles and the source images come from Flickr, except the picture of George Bush, which was scraped from the net. The second image was also posted on Flickr but not, clearly, by the actual photographer.

The mosaics were created with a trial version of the extremely decent Mazaika.
The idea of the series came from a conversation I had about six months ago, with two friends of mine. After mastering the Flickr API and first considering to write the mosaic-creation software myself, I figured trying out an existing product first.

If enough people are interested, I can ship out posters, at cost. The above picture would come out at around 100x50cm.

The story

Bush’s mosaic consists of 3500 tiles, taken from Flickr, that have ‘iraq’ and ‘war’ as tags. One of those, the Abu Ghraib image used in the second mosaic is in there as well.

The Abu Ghraib mosaic consists of 3500 tiles, all taken from Flickr that have the tags ‘nude’ and ‘woman’. The reason is twofold: First, the tortures in Abu Ghraib have been commoditized, people (in the west) no longer taking notice. Second, although the torture pictures, now, shock no-one, they should. And to offset the shock value of the tortured Arab in the picture, the mosaic consists of nude women, pictures of which are considered shocking in the Arab world.

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One of the nude women in the second mosaic is the picture used as the basis for the third mosaic. That mosaic consists of 3500 tiles, taken from Flickr, all tagged with ‘man’ and ‘smile’, for obvious reasons. One of the tiles is the picture of George Bush used for the first mosaic.

And of course, the whole thing symbolises the shallowness of consumption culture.