Stop 4

Technology has allowed the growth of public surveillance to reach new heights – whether for safety or control is not always clear. Rupert Murdoch’s head over skull bones with the caption “Pirate Empire” not only incorporates Murdoch’s shady history of crippling the Australian television industry; it may also infer his involvement in phone hacking scandals. It appears that surveillance is allowing a concentration of control and power to those who have it. Here Rupert Murdoch is playing the actual Big Brother, prying into people’s private lives. According to the artist, Murdoch is worthy of being called a criminal – just as a pirate is a thief, Murdoch is too by intruding or stealing people’s privacy. Street art is often enhanced by the deliberateness of placement, and this is no exception. The fact that the paste-ups are placed behind bars adds to the message from the artist that Murdoch actually should be too. The added spray paint from other artists and the peeling at the edges, offer a sense of impermanence or insignificance, both of the paste up and it’s subject.