Humans seem to be a very repetitive and predictable creature. Time and time again throughout the centuries, a human in a position of power will seek more power whether in one form or another. Utilizing various forms of persuasion one makes his or hers followers enable them to the fullest without the followers even realizing the extent of their actions. Art propaganda is one of the most effective ways to accomplish this. Propaganda generally associates with bad or false information to promote certain actions that benefit a specific group or person. When art is used for this, the effectiveness drastically increases. “A picture is worth a thousand words”. Any one person will get a different message out of a piece of art than the next and so on. The viewer’s imagination can go anywhere and can be interpreted in anyway. Just a small thought is implanted and the imagination expands it.
Pablo Picasso’s painting, Guernica (1937), depicts the bombing of Basque, Guernica during the Spanish revolution. Most propaganda needs some words or a phrase to establish the intended idea and will lack clear meaning otherwise. Picasso chose not to with this piece. He remained adamant as to never explain the true meaning of Guernica’s imagery. Although he did mention that this was a work of deliberate propaganda, maybe his purpose was to gather supporters against the Spanish civil war during World War Two. He allowed the painting to only be displayed at the Museum of modern art in New York, only to return to his homeland after the fall of Francoist dictatorship. Its return came eight years after Picasso’s death and two years after Franco’s in 1981. On the surface of the Guernica Painting, people and animals alike are shown dying and in pain. A light bulb near the top represents the explosions of the bombs. Picasso exercised his artistic genius to entice people into protesting the Spanish civil war, based on the bombing in...
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