Barbara Kruger

In this section of our blog will discuss the different photographers who have been important throughout history and some new talents that have been emerging.

Today we will talk of Barbara Kruger:

   Barbara Kruger

The stereotypes that shape our social identities are recreated over and over by the mass media and that prevents us from developing our own identity. “You’re not yourself,” says this provocative American artist who has the problems of individual identity, sexism, consumerism, sexism the central themes of direct messages, clear that sends Kruger.

After working at Mademoiselle magazine, Barbara Kruger is beginning to be interested in the decade of the 70, for a number of issues related to militant feminism following the wave of other women artists like Cindy Sherman. To launch his message, Kruger opt to take photos that the 40 and 50 appeared in magazines or manuals that are trying to convey socially accepted values for women.

On these black and white photos, our artist writes provocative phrases in black, red and white leaves with slogans denouncing those who want to cultural patterns, social, political, relegating the role of women in a society dominated by the values male. Messages using the same strategies that the mass media to highlight the mechanisms and at the same time, getting your message in a clear and direct.

We could say that using a simple send messages of great depth as, for example, in the case of Your body is a battleground (Your body is a battlefield) sentence aimed at defending the right of women to their own bodies and make decisions on it, in this case involving the defense of abortion rights.

In addition, Kruger sees consumerism as a manifestation of a social construction based on machismo. In this vein has launched slogans like Buy me, I’ll change your life (Buy me, I change my life) or I shop, therefore I am (I buy therefore I am). Kruger phrases stamped on shirts, billboards or shopping bags with what a brownish definitive critical significance reinforced.

Criticism of the social model could not leave out one of the great symbols of America as its flag. A work in replacing the white bars for sentences beginning Who is free to choose? (Who is free to choose?) And end with Who laughs last? (Who laughs last?), Clearly pointing to the values that shape American society.

And ultimately, these slogans almost become a kind of propaganda, which is struggling with his own weapons against the mechanisms at its disposal the power and elites to model individuals in a manner consistent with their interests. A process in which women are caught in a tangle that the sentence to be second class citizens, forced to fulfill social roles very specific and restrictive of their freedom. That’s what Kruger said through his works.

Barbara Works:

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Official Artist Site:


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