Barbara Kruger: Society, Sex, and Slogans

Topics: Government, Gender role, Work Pages: 4 (1289 words) Published: February 11, 2008
Barbara Kruger:
Society, Sex, and Slogans

"I want people to be drawn into the space of the work. And a lot of people are like me in that they have relatively short attention spans. So I shoot for the window of opportunity." --Barbara Kruger

After reading Edward Said's essay "Opponents, Audiences, Constituencies, and Community" I knew that the work of Barbara Kruger would be very exciting to explore. Born in 1945, Kruger is an artist who became extremely popular in the 1980's for her collaged artwork. Her artwork creates questions and entices responses form viewers. The collages are able to create a playful but meaningful dialogue on important political and social issues. Responding critically to the world around her through social, sexual, and political artwork, Kruger bold style creates a direct interaction with the viewer, which in turn enables the viewer to respond objectively to the ideas Kruger has presented.

After studying at Syracuse University and with Diane Arbus at Parsons School of Design, Kruger worked as a graphic designer and later got work as a head designer for Mademoiselle Magazine. Keeping with a very graphic style, Kruger's work looks like it could come straight out of a magazine. This work can be very appealing to a wide audience because of its straightforward graphic nature. With work reminiscent of advertisements and billboards, Kruger used photographic images with a brief declarative statement in large type. At the height of her career, it was not uncommon for her to display her work as actually billboards and advertisements in urban areas.

Interestingly, in Edward Said's essay "Opponents, Audiences, Constituencies, and Community" he discusses the idea of " "interference". Where "interference" refers to a generalization of information when a generalization seems impossible to make. In a world where people often rely on the government controlled media to gain knowledge, Kruger uses this to her advantage and plays on this...
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