Sunday, January 24, 2010

Personality in Caricature

The caricature is of Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The artist has transformed the image of Ahmadinejad into that of a mouse. Gombrich states that "the real aim of the true caricaturist is to transform the whole man into a completely new and ridiculous figure which nevertheless resembles the original in a striking and surprising way." In this caricature, the artist first draws their depiction of the Iranian president, as seen in real life. Next to that is the transformed caricature, which a viewer responds to through laughter. The drawing of the president does not use any of the same features used in the first drawing, in fact the image is more closely a depiction of a mouse. Yet, by using the same hair style, including facial hair, we immediately recognize the mouse as the Iranian president. What interests me about this caricature is how well it relates to the quote by Annibale Carracci. Carracci states, "Is not the caricaturist's task exactly the same as the classical artist's? Both see the lasting truth beneath the surface of mere outward appearance. Both try to help nature accomplish its plan. The one may strive to visualize the perfect form and to realize it in his work, the other to grasp the perfect deformity, and thus reveal the very essence of a personality. A good caricature, like every work of art, is more true to life than reality itself." In this case, the artist gives their description of how they interpret the personality of Ahmadinejad. It is clear that they believe the president has rat-like intentions, he is seen as a rodent, and to some a disgusting and evil person.

1 comment:

  1. I agree, most people think that most politician have a hidden agenda. Many comparisons have been made, such as GWB being a monkey, and basically what I draw from these illustrations are that there are bad tendencies and immature characteristics that come across and when compared to animals they are even less civilized and appear to not have evolved as the rest of us have in this society. Which provides us humor and makes us feel better about ourselves.