The fairly striking image above is one of the many illustrations created by Steve Cutt, a professional illustrator/animator who has worked for a range of clients including Coca-Cola, Google, Reebok, Magners and Kellogs, among many more. On his website, you will find his illustrations, all with a striking style that is almost exhilarating.
Not only are Cutts’ illustrations informative on the negative sides of our culture, they’re also interesting in a way that only good art is. They demand a second look and spark controversy due to their startling nature. Cutts’ ability when it comes to art is not up for debate, the cartoony style of the characters contrasting with the often dark colouring and seemingly bleak subject that he is working with.
It’s interesting how it often takes artists such as Cutts to portray our society in such a way, holding up a mirror at us and saying “look, look at what we are and look at what we’re doing” in the hope of showing the viewer that there are problems within their lives that they’re likely ignoring because it’s easier than facing up to it.
There are lots of artists working with ideas like this, trying to reflect society back it itself, likely even without a moral judgement or ethical point hidden between the lines. It’s usually the chief point of art, to be a look into the society and world surrounding it during its conception. In this way, we can see these works as an attempt to highlight that people in the western world are greedy, moved by the prospect of food and technology more than compassion. We’re allowing capitalism and production distract us from the rich getting richer and being, literally in one of the above pictures, carried by the poor.
If you’d like to take a look at the other work in Steve Cutts’ portfolio, and I suggest you do, you can find it at http://www.stevecutts.com/. The website also showcases his work with animation, some of which also have a social commentary bent to them.