Artist Barbara Kruger designed this bandana as part of the Artists Band Together project organized by Shepard Fairey. The fifteen participating artists designed bandanas as limited-edition artworks (to be worn or displayed) which were available for sale. The proceeds from the sales were donated to key organizations in the US working to encourage voter turnout in the 2020 presidential election.
Kruger’s bandana follows the design of the American flag. It has a blue field in the upper left corner, with text written in white type (instead of white stars) superimposed. Similarly, the red and white stripes of the American flag have become a red background with text, again written in white type.
The text is what makes this bandana so compelling, especially when appearing against the blue and red fields. Take a minute to read the artist’s words, and you will appreciate why this bandana is such an interesting and remarkable political statement, as well as work of art.
Kruger (b. 1945) is a prominent American conceptual artist whose text-based works examine a wide variety of contemporary issues. She is widely known for her black and white photograph-based images overlaid with slogans and captions, with the text often appearing in white on a red background, as though it’s a sticker slapped across a photograph. Her work is displayed in galleries and museums, as well as merchandised and sold.