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Adel Abidin | Iraq / Finland

To Mohammad! To Mecca!, 2009

Double side neon lights in a metal box/ signage
260x87 cm

Courtesy of the collector Gilles Fuchs

The work emphasizes the idea of propaganda, where a planned out dissemination of political ideas among a wide audience is carried out in order to affect their behavior and positions.

Propaganda through art utilizes the atmosphere of uncertainty during a time of revolution or war, and by exploiting ideological and theoretical contexts it serves interests in the capitalist world.

At times of war, propaganda is based on a number of paradigms, such as "we are right," or "we are strong," which the public is thirsty to hear, disseminated among the masses and creating a feeling of security. But at the same time, with these messages the propaganda carries other content that is meant to affect the behavior, position, and consumption habits of the public.

These messages are based on elements of brainwash, and are aided by symbols and images originating in the emotional and cultural memory of the collective.

To Mohammad! To Mecca! (2009) is based on the familiar image of the Coca Cola logo. It derives from a rumor that when the logo is flipped, the anti-Islamist message "Not Muhammad! Not Mecca!" appears.

Using the advertising of the most popular Western drink in the world, a universal message is sent out, confronting the Western worldview with Islamist ideology.

Presenting the logo overturned is another expression of the possibility that propaganda is a tool that can serve one interest and its opposite at the same time.