(Photo by our own Vance Lehmkuhl)
Yes, this IS creepy....
The Soviet-style heroic Obama, the use of a single word "Hope," do make the SEPTA bus shelter posters a bit reminiscent of George Orwell's "1984."
Its more direct antecedent is John Carpenter's 1988 paranoid totalitarian fantasy flick, "They Live." Replace the word "Hope" with "Obey" on that Obama poster and tell us what you think.
The poster was designed by urban street artist/skateboarder Shepard Fairey, who enjoys a successful career as an artist and designer in Los Angeles.
Fairey gained fame with a couple of viral street-art campaigns in the 1990s, including "Andre the Giant has a Posse" and "Obey Giant," which resulted in thousands of small posters and stickers appearing on lamp posts and walls (and everywhere else) in urban centers around the nation.
I've complained here about people taking something positive about the Obama campaign -- large, enthusisatic and young crowds, for example -- and suggesting something cult-like and sinister, which means a poster like this -- not commissioned by the campaign -- is not particularly helpful.
It looks a little too much like these, no?