Protest Posters 2: New International Entries Confront Issues with Confidence

These call-to-action posters from around the world deal with ongoing social and political issues.

Protest posters have a longstanding history in this country and abroad. Their capability to portray an important and timely message is heightened and often quite direct in delivery. The Graphis Protest Poster 2 book will celebrate such bold statements, and our recent entries are already stirring the pot.
Israeli design firm Studio Reisinger (under the creative direction of Dan Reisinger) pushed back against nuclear proliferation with Chernobyl 1986 (ABOVE, LEFT). Two black blasts, perhaps representing the two deaths recorded during the catastrophic accident, are set against a stark yellow background. Additionally, his use of Hebrew next to “1986” reminds viewers in a subtle way that the spread of nuclear arms is a concern for his community as well.
Danish designer Rikke Hansen created EMP(A)T(H)Y (ABOVE, RIGHT) for her client, Speak UP! The organization’s mission is to encourage students, parents and educators to engage in tough conversations on today’s issues. For her poster, Hansen comments on a study she assessed which proves that empathy levels have been declining for the past 30 years. Using Adobe Photoshop, she removed the “A” and “H” from the word “Empathy” to leave us with the chilling remains: “Empty.” Set on a face-shaped with no defining features, the viewer understands immediately that this societal shift will have implications for the world on a whole.
STUDIO INTERNATIONAL from Croatia also offered their poster made for the UN entitled Human Rights/70 Years (ABOVE, LEFT). The two left hands appear to come together for an agreement-binding shake, but tension is felt, as they cannot complete the transaction. To make matters worse, undecipherable letters and arrows overlay the hands, as if to show us that there is inherently misunderstanding between the two parties. The poster relays the message that there is work to be done, preferably with UN oversight.
Another submission by Studio Reisinger is called Separation and makes us think about issues like crossbreeding and the natural instincts of prey and their predators. Though, it is easy for the mind to jump to larger sociopolitical issues, keeping the mind guessing about his stance. The mark of a great protest poster is its ability to not only to catch our eye, but also to fundamentally change how we think about the world around us.
Submissions for Graphis’ Protest Posters 2 Competition run until April 7, 2020. Winners will have the opportunity to see their work published on our website, blog, newsletter, and social media platforms!
Author: Graphis