Pete Kirill has already published some works on Yareah magazine and everybody was enthusiastic about his Neo-Pop portraits of the North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il. Today, he wants to present other two paintings from his new series “The Dictator Hall of Fame”. A series where he will paint famous dictators from different cultures as American pop icons. Two works are finished: ‘Flavor Fidel’ depicts the Cuban dictator Fidel Castro as American reality TV star and hip hop artist Flavor Flav… In fact, Fidel Castro is wearing a similar cap that Flavor Flav wears usually and, of course, the cap is askew, a casual attitude because he is a friendly person who can behave as a simple hip hop singer. The background is painted light blue, a nice light blue, which highlight the Communist red of the shirt and cap of our little Fidel. Is all ok? Well, maybe not so much, because Pete Kirill, a master of irony, has painted Fidel Castro’s beard, shorter than it used to be and gray. The result is a sinister shadow on his face, in contrast to the fresh face of Flavor Flav, and seeing it we start to be restless, the peace has vanished of this in principle cheerful portrait: now, we are in front of a hard man, in front of a true dictator. But time will vanish too and time is represented by the clock which is hanging from his neck, because everything can change in Cuba as in the stage of a hip hop star. A spoonful of hope!
Same happens with “The Chavez Show”. Although the Venezuelan Hugo Chavez is smiling in the center of a green-orange whirl, the opacity of his eyes convey to us the possibility of a lie, perhaps involved in the gold of his tacky ring.
Two masterpieces of this Neo-Pop artist, always full of ideas and contrasts, always trying to compare people and societies. He is currently working on a piece titled “Muammar Jackson”, which is a portrait of Muammar Gaddafi as pop star Michael Jackson… We hope to see it soon.
More about Pete Kirill art: http://petekirill.com/