Real Democracy Australia - Viral Participatory Poster Project.
Do we need to crowdsource a new Australian Constitution? Does anything matter more than the environment? Should Australia become a republic with an Australian head of state? Should whistleblowers be protected? Is representative democracy antiquated? Controversial artist Carl Scrase is asking these questions in a new project that mixes street art posters with political activism and aims to go viral through social media.
This is the first major work the artist has made since he was publically targeted as being a “hypocrite” by the Lord Mayor of Melbourne Robert Doyle in Australia's biggest tabloid late in 2011. The third page article criticised Carl for receiving funding from government funding bodies, being the recipient of art awards with corporate sponsorship and choosing to still partake in the Occupy Melbourne.
“I think it is really scary that politicians like Robert Doyle would have artists unable to criticise the state,” Carl says. “I think everyone in Australia is realising that our current political system is not working. That is why I am making this work, I want to put democracy itself back on the agenda.”
Carl believes passionately that this artwork could change the focus of the debate in the upcoming federal elections.
“The adversarialism we see in our current political system is unable to deal with the real problems facing Australia, Australia’s creative minds are leading the world in creating new ways to deepen democracy, be they tech entrepreneurs, political activist or visual artists.”
This artwork aims to let Australia know that there are options out there for a more participatory and open democracy. Carl, who is also the founder of Real Democracy Australia, has been himself deep within what he calls the “Gov2” movement that is spreading around the globe.
“From Tahrir Square to Wall St, Madrid to Melbourne, we are collaborating, trying to spread real democracy to every corner of this globe. I admin social media pages that have over 30,000 followers from around the world and they are growing each day.”
The posters will be available to be downloaded from the realdemocracyaustralia.org website and Carl is encouraging people to put them up in their classrooms, workplaces and homes. People can tweet responses that are captured on the posters under the hashtag #Gov2Au and he will retweet any that tag him with @carlscrase.
The artwork will be launched with a month long installation of the posters at SLOT Gallery throughout March.
Carl Scrase at SLOT Gallery, 38 Botany Road, Alexandria, NSW. 25 February – 30 March 2013