By Sophie Rieckmann
If you were to walk along Cross Street in Islington, London, you would spot something rather unusual on one of the walls. It would probably even result in you doing a double-take of the graffiti. This image was created by a street artist known only as ‘Bambi’, who has done a collection of anti-Trump art. And this one included our own Mrs May too.
Of course, the inspiration for the piece came from the BAFTA-winning film ‘La La Land’ (starring Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling). It depicts the popular image of a man and a woman dancing together, and in this rendition, that man is Donald Trump (U.S. president circa. 2017) and Theresa May (PM circa. 2016).
In January, it was revealed that Theresa May had invited Mr Trump on a state visit to the UK. Critics suggested that this was too soon into the Presidency of Trump- others suggested that he should never set foot on the island again (1.85 million people signing a petition to ban his visit), but that is a whole other blog post!
According to Bambi herself (however, I shall be paraphrasing here), it is a satire of the release of such a happy film as La La Land during a time of political turmoil and uncertainty. Bambi did not, however, comment on why she decided to present Trump and May as dancing together. Surely, she would be aware of the fact that inferences would be made as to what the premise of this piece could be. What might that be?
Well, I shall offer you an explanation. Many people are sceptical of May, just as they are sceptical of Brexit and what Britain’s foreign policies should be. Our international relations have come somewhat under strain since we bailed out of the EU, and Obama warned explicitly on a state trip to see Mr cameron that we would go to ‘the back of the line’ if we left the EU. Well, now we have, no one is sure of anything. Furthermore, the arrival of a certain orange-looking man in the White House in January has caused controversy ‘across the pond’. Britain and the USA are often paired as allies (aside from the Civil War of Independence, of course), so it would be natural to assume in most circumstances that Britain and USA should maintain good relations with each other. But now that Trump is in office, Britain (and most of planet Earth… possibly a few aliens) are more than sceptical of what he might do next. This gesture from may to Trump of a state visit is not condoned by many people on this island, and a flirtation with the US in order to stay in the ‘good books’ of a potentially dangerous (although I don’t think there is much discrepancy) Trump. Two leaders, two causes, one term (in office), strained relations and a lot to fix. If this isn’t satire enough, what is? Perhaps a friendly ‘dance’ would be quite entertaining for us all, although I didn’t know that the jive was partial to politics!
A little political muse for you all to consider (or discard, either way), represented in pop culture 😊 What are your opinions? Do you have any other theories as to what this could represent?