Wanted: Obama and Romney?

The Brooklyn Paper
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

Talk about negative campaigning.

Fake NYPD wanted posters showing the faces of President Obama and White House hopeful Mitt Romney have popped up around Williamsburg in an act of subversive street art that’s anything but a presidential endorsement.

In fact, the posters accuse both bitter political rivals of alleged crimes including “murder and conspiracy to further the revocation of constitutional liberties.”

The police-sketch style drawings feature the heights, ages, weights, and names of both “suspects,” a lengthy description of their alleged wrongdoing, and even the NYPD logo.

Obama takes heat for his decision to order a September 2011 drone attack that killed American-born Yemeni cleric Anwar Al-Aulaqi, while the poster warns Brooklynites to look out for Romney, who was last spotted wearing a “charcoal suit with blue tie and American flag lapel pin.”

The posters appear to be the latest work of the activist and artist working under the moniker Essam, who has plastered the borough with street art addressing police and military control in recent months.

The Brooklyn Paper tried to contact Essam, but he keeps a low-profile and doesn’t have a website, or a readily visible Twitter or Facebook account.

But he did speak with the arts and culture website Animal New York last month after he put up 100 posters mocking the NYPD for plans to fly military-style drones over the city, claiming he’s just trying to spark a discussion.

“If the people want [drones], that’s what they want,” Essam said. “But we’re not having that conversation, so that’s what I’m here to start.”

He also said that poster art is new to him.

“I’m not a street artist by nature,” said Essam. “It’s the medium I choose based on the message.”

The wanted-style fliers aren’t as ambitious as his colorful drone posters, which he placed over ads in phone booths and subway stations.

The Obama and Romney mashup is black-and-white, and more likely to be found taped to telephone polls next to other fliers.

But the fake NYPD release is certainly eyecatching — and NURTUREart gallery director Marco Antonini believes it’s effective, even if it’s a bit of a cliche.

“On a visual and conceptual level, it seem facile or even naive, but from a communication standpoint, it works infinitely more than gallery art,” said Antonini. “A lot of people will remember that. Maybe not for too long.”

Updated 5:36 pm, July 9, 2018
Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

Reasonable discourse

Malembi from BK says:
how ——ing gay is this? i'll bet this article sucks.
Oct. 25, 2012, 9:02 am
Observer from Kent Ave says:
I've been reading this paper for a long time and this "Malembi" person never has anything constructive to say in the comments section. It's always something duragatory or negative about the articles written or other people's comments. You are clearly a very miserable person. It's sad to see somebody take their frustrations out on an internet message board.
Oct. 25, 2012, 3:19 pm
Malembi from BK says:
you're isaac ——in newton?
Oct. 26, 2012, 5:06 pm

Comments closed.

First name
Last name
Your neighborhood
Email address
Daytime phone

Your letter must be signed and include all of the information requested above. (Only your name and neighborhood are published with the letter.) Letters should be as brief as possible; while they may discuss any topic of interest to our readers, priority will be given to letters that relate to stories covered by The Brooklyn Paper.

Letters will be edited at the sole discretion of the editor, may be published in whole or part in any media, and upon publication become the property of The Brooklyn Paper. The earlier in the week you send your letter, the better.

Keep it local!

Stay in touch with your community. Subscribe to our free newsletter: