Artist: ‘Anti-racism campaign worked’

by | Dec 18, 2019 11:52

The Serie A monkey anti-racism art was “too complex” for many, but the artist responsible believes the controversy proves it was successful. “People stopped listening” to anti-racism campaigns.

Following the international outrage over a trio of paintings of monkeys for an initiative combating racism in football, the Lega Serie A apologised “to anyone who was offended by the work.”

The Serie A monkey anti-racism art was “too complex” for many, but the artist responsible believes the controversy proves it was successful. “People stopped listening” to anti-racism campaigns.

Following the international outrage over a trio of paintings of monkeys for an initiative combating racism in football, the Lega Serie A apologised “to anyone who was offended by the work.”

Artist Simone Fugazzotto wanted to “give a different message that really could be incisive in the fight against racism, and not the usual slogan that, sadly, nobody pays any attention to anymore. Something that really could make people reflect and create debate.”

According to the director general of the Italian chapter of the International Advertising Agency (IAA), the problem with this anti-racism campaign was it used complex artwork for what ought to be a simple message.

“It was like speaking Ancient Greek to the common man, who we all are, in trying to convince them about an enormous issue like racism.”

Fugazzotto tried to explain the thought process behind the trio of paintings depicting a chimp with blue eyes and another with a monolid.

“I sought to turn around the words of racists in the stadium that shouted ‘monkey’ and throw bananas on the pitch and make monkey noises,” the artist told Perform.

“So I said, seeing as we cannot explain to these people that we are all men, I will turn around this monkey theme and I will say we are all monkeys, because we are all the same, equal, man and monkeys, as you can see there is no difference.

“I am proud of what I have done, because maybe for the first time, and the reason we are talking about it, we can really confront the problem.

“Because while we say we are all equal, there is no difference, people don’t really pay any notice. They stop listening and say ‘oh yes, I’ve already heard this.’

“Do you know why all this chaos and coverage is happening? It’s because for the first time I have changed things, I have changed the language and now there is this controversy and focus.

“So I understand the league wanting to remove themselves from this message, but I certainly will not, because I profoundly believe in it.”

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