Soft Rocket

September 28th, 2008

softrocket

Oh, hello. Found this sad little rocket in an old sketch book. Was meant to be a t-shirt design. T-shirt design is kind of boring, though. Maybe the cleverist t-shirt has nothing on it?

updated 01/09: looking back: love the idea. The commentary is kind of lame, though. A t-shirt with nothing on it would be stupid! Only YOU would get the joke…the very same problem the average conceptual art piece has.

In all truthfulness, my problem with tshirt designs with a “message” is the same problem I have with bumper stickers (and all types of social affiliations, religious or political). The hazard is giving the impression that your entire existence can be expressed through one particular sentiment, idea, or membership. The mere act of CHOOSING a symbol is an act of exclusivity of all other ideas, because you chose THIS symbol over THAT symbol. Any kind of choice results in an oversimplification of reality, and oversimplification of your experience of the world.

You have CHOSEN to misrepresent and oversimplify yourself, and why would you want to do that? You are thoughtful and fair, and carefully weigh and balance all sides of an argument, listen carefully, and clarify facts (as you know them) and misconceptions. You try to be honest, but not brash. You believe in truth and justice, but know the world is a complicated place, and not everyone can see eye to eye. So, why would you put a one-liner on the back of your car, or the front of your body? Are you a one-liner?

The message of this particular design? War is an ineffectual way of achieving peace. And there’s nothing wrong with that idea. And a rocket shaped like a flaccid penis is funny. The “problem” with the concept is that it excludes the legitimacy of a country needing to defend itself (with a rocket for example). The soft rocket negates that possibility, because the concept expressed isn’t “war is bad when it’s not justified according to my calculations, but it is totally justified when I feel it is so”. It is simply, “War is unjustified.” Sometimes it is, and sometimes it isn’t, but all you know by looking at my shirt is that I believe there is no such thing as a justified war.


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