Over the weekend, some truly great L.A. street art went viral. The posters feature Sen. Ted Cruz’s head atop a shirtless torso tattooed within an inch of its armpits, hawking the “Blacklisted and Loving It Tour,” with a cigarette hanging from his lip. Cruz was indeed appearing in L.A. the week the posters promoted, though at the Beverly Wilshire, not the Hilton.
The speed with which the poster’s image sailed through political circles, left and right, illustrates the power of a little unexpected art, particularly good street art, which is not exactly known as a conservative strong suit. Cruz’s response illustrates the immense power of a little unexpected art in the reply as well. His genuinely funny (not just graded on the Senator Curve) response spurred a whole other round of coverage.
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) March 15, 2014
Today, he signed the poster…another round of Twitter coverage.
Ted Cruz signing a punk rock poster of himself, smoking and tattooed pic.twitter.com/p5dAk2oMsp
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) March 17, 2014
Caleb Howe at RightScoop tracked down the guy who appears to be the artist, whose social media presence— as is to be expected of street artists who are good— is weird:
Like many artists, particularly in Southern California, Sabo’s art seems to tend toward the, to say the least, controversial or “shock” genre. This is evidenced of course by the Cruz posters, but also by some of the other far more over the edge pieces posted on the Facebook site. We have asked him about his artwork and in particular about his motivations with the Cruz posters, but have not heard back at this time.
Until then, you’ll be happy to know that, friend or foe, the Cruz posters will soon be available to all.
Meanwhile, the poster has inspired other Photoshops: