Commuters in Hollywood today noticed that several prominent billboards on Highland Ave. near Franklin had been defaced in an apparent stunt by the daring street artist known only as Red Rum. The ads, for an upcoming Tom Hanks-Julia Roberts romantic comedy entitled Larry Crowne, have been re-imagined in Red Rum’s signature “bullet-in-the-face” motif:
The iconoclastic and reclusive Red Rum frequently targets mainstream comedy advertising, cleverly employing irony to subvert the mass-market message. In the piece above, the artist juxtaposes the irrepressible smile of Tom Hanks with a bullet to the face. The implication is that not even being shot between the eyes could impede the pure joy of riding a Vespa with Julia Roberts. The UK-based artist implores us to ask ourselves important questions like: What the hell is Larry Crowne, anyway? Do they really think they can just put Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts on a Vespa and call it a day? Jeez, how airbrushed can you get? And what the hell is she laughing at?
We will definitely keep our eyes peeled for more emerging work from this bold, provocative artist.