Sunday, February 21, 2010

Irony is only as good as its symbols

In the reading, the age of caricature, by Diana Donald, the focus is on caricature as opinionated and persuasive forms of propaganda. The caricature is a loaded form of propaganda, simply in the fact that it is a quicker and easier way to inform people of one’s message by getting them to plainly view it.

In that statement lays the key to the success and failure of a caricature. A caricature is successful if one can view it and understand it without research or much prior knowledge of its subject and what makes it understandable is a result of symbolism. Symbolism is the skeleton of caricature, without the structure of the idea, the idea can’t exist. The tiniest inclusion of one object or thing can mean the world to the message of the caricature.

For instance in the picture Masterpiece Silhouette Theater, the meanings of the two pictures change drastically with the simple inclusion or exclusion of an easel. With or without the easel means one is either an artist, idealized and respectable, or a pervert, revolted and criminal.

Also this image, like the image of Hogarth’s, Laughing Audience, I feel mocks the very person who made the image as well as its viewers, by comparing an artist to a pervert, with the only difference being an easel.

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