Arab Graffiti Artists Speak on Their Hack of the “Homeland” Set
Back in October of this year, the news was filled with reports of how Arab graffiti artists hired to tag sets for the “Homeland” cable TV series and give it some “authenticity” had instead used the opportunity to mercilessly critique the show’s politics, which they deem racist propaganda. No one on the show’s production team bothered to ask or double-check what the collective’s tags actually said, or if anything real was being said at all, so commentary such as “Homeland is a joke and it didn’t make us laugh” was broadcast alongside a #BlackLivesMatter hashtag.
The artists responsible – Heba Amin, Caram Kapp and Don Karl – operate under the moniker “The Arabian Street Artists,” and just dropped the short film Homeland is Not a Series to coincide with “Homeland’s” recent season finale, to visually breakdown their handiwork and the politics behind their action. Title cards open the film, giving the viewer basic background information on the act itself, and then the viewer is awash in rapid-fire, quick-edit imagery, dialogue that is sampled from the show, and snippets of actual news footage. It’s a brisk, dense, potent bit of mass media activism perfectly attuned to this age of Banksy and Anonymous. The full clip is below.
Image courtesy Field of Vision.