Artists Group Uses "Guerrilla Pop" to Question Capitalism

San Francisco, April 24, 1999. On Saturday at the Civic Center thousands
demonstrated for a new trial for former Black Panther member Mumia
Abu-Jamal who has been on death row in Pennsylvania since 1982 for the
murder of police officer Daniel Faulkner. 

A few blocks away at the intersection of Duboce Avenue and Valencia Street
three dramatic black and white portraits of Mumia stare out from a
billboard; below, in large bold letters is the enigmatic text "THREE MUMIA
!!!!!!!!!".  Some might think it should say "FREE MUMIA", but not those
into guerrilla pop - the latest thing in public art.

The billboard is the work of the organization Together We Can Defeat
Capitalism (TWCDC), who pasted up the Mumia advertisement at several
locations in the early hours of Friday morning. TWCDC's mission is to
encourage discussion of the contradictions of late 20th Century capitalism
and have some fun too.  They aim to achieve this using a strategy they call
guerrilla pop, which fuses hit-and-run undercover tactics with the wit and
irony of pop art: Che Guevara meets Andy Warhol. 

billboard in progress

TWCDC's previous guerrilla pop projects in San Francisco have included a
parody of Citibank's "In Your Dreams" ad campaign and an advertisement on
the BART subway  system proclaiming "Capitalism - Stops At Nothing", which
gained international attention.

The Mumia billboard does not demand that people support Mumia, rather it
asks that people think about what they see and what they are told in our
image-saturated, corporate-dominated culture. The group believes that
marches and rallies are fine as far as they go, but that more can be
achieved by taking over the sites of information distribution in our
culture and raising philosophical questions rather than presenting
questionable answers.

completed billboard

A Together We Can Defeat Capitalism Project