Manifesto project, part II – making

anti-trump-manifesto

For the manifesto project, me and my classmate Tilly decided to follow on from what I was doing for my political print project. We continued with the “anti-Trump” theme, and our manifesto was essentially a piece that called him out on some of his most stupid and problematic remarks. The square, hand-drawn style of it was in part inspired by Red Alan’s Manifesto, by Grayson Perry – we believed this kind of style is more relatable to people than the commonly used constant typeface of many political manifestos.

It was done in black acrylic to make the writing clear and stand out, yet look somewhat rustic and imperfect.

Below are the quotes we chose and how we responded to them.

“I will build a great wall (…) and I will make Mexico pay for that wall.” Donald Trump, June 2015

Our first reaction to this was “what an unbelievably childish thing to do.” It is extremely petty to make Mexico pay for such an enormous and costly project, and suggests incredible arrogance, such that he thinks he can do whatever he likes. We immediately thought it’s as if he thinks he is playing SIM City.

“It’s really cold outside (…) we could use a big fat dose of global warming.” Donald Trump, October 2015

We were pretty annoyed by Trump’s total lack of perspective here – he tweeted this from New York in winter, obviously forgetting that arctic ice sheets are decreasing in area every year, putting all the wildlife in there in danger. Obviously the tweet was a joke, but we thought it a wildly insensitive one, and we summarised our objections to it with the line “tell that to all the polar bears” to question his lack of perspective.

“When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending the best (…) They’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime, they’re rapists.” Donald Trump, June 2015

We were doing this manifesto project shortly after recordings of Donald Trump bragging about sexually abusing women had emerged, so we found it ironic to say the least that Trump would accuse people of being “rapists” when he himself seems to think sexual assault is okay.

 

 

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Manifesto project, part I – Initial ideas

For the manifesto project, I collaborated with my classmate Tilly. We found that a fantastic text to read in preparation for the project was Harriet Baker’s “10 Game-changing art manifestos” (1). It is a fantastic guide to different visual styles, different writing styles and content that are used in artistic manifestos. It was fascinating to see how some manifestos are purely text-based, while others include both text and imagery.

One of my favourite manifestos was the Guerrilla Girls’ manifesto (shown below). It is very simple, its point is clear, and the use of vibrant colour and bold font give the image lots of impact.

guerrilla-girs

Untitled – Guerrilla Girls (royalacademy.org.uk/article/ten-game-changing-manifestos)

Shown above is another manifesto featured in the article, “Red Alan’s Manifesto,” by Grayson Perry. The style of this manifesto sets it apart from the more common style used in political manifestos, which typically involves a bold, constant typeface such as “Helvetica.” This handwritten one is much more relatable; it has no overtones of power or authority, it seems like a manifesto written by the general public, for the general public. It is more easily understood by the majority of its audience. Myself and Tilly wanted ours to be handwritten for the same reason: we felt that the handwritten approach is more approachable for the majority of people. This is consistent with the very nature of our message: we want the general public to unite against Donald Trump, and what he represents.

Since we wanted it to be relatable, we decided to simply choose some of the most stupid things Trump has said, and reply to them with cutting, sarcastic comments, because this is how a lot of people might respond to them. We hoped this would provide a harsh, funny, and relatable critique of the man.

  1. Baker, Harriet, April 2015, 10 game-changing art manifestos, online at royalacademy.org.uk/article/ten-game-changing-manifestos