A cartoon pig being slaughtered on an assembly line. Quotes from philosophers about the suffering of critters. These aren’t your usual big-money New York billboard campaigns. But these artists aim to raise awareness of animal rights during New York Fashion Week, starting August 29, by hosting a group show displayed on billboards.
“Taking place during one of the biggest events of the annual fashion calendar, New York Fashion Week, Animal Liberation will provide a much-needed critique of the inhumane use of animal products like fur and leather in the fashion industry,” according to a statement released by the artists.
New York illustrator Praxis Vgz is curating the Animal Liberation art show in collaboration with arts platform SaveArtSpace. A South American graphic designer, illustrator and stencil artist, Vgz started out working in Colombia in 2009. Since moving to New York City in 2014, Vgz’s work has centered on animal rights and cruelty-free company.
Three other artists will also be showing their animal rights-related work on the billboards. Brazilian artist Camila Rosa started her career in 2010 with a female street art collective. Since then, she’s graduated to working with big-name clients like Apple, Netflix and Adidas. Fashion Weekers will pass beneath Rosa’s artwork of frowning women holding a rabbit, baby goat and piglet.
British illustrator and animal rights activist Kate Louise Powell calls on famous philosophers like Jeremy Bentham to help make her point. She pairs an illustration of two apparently skinned but living rats held in the gloved hands of researchers with Bentham’s assertion: “The question is not, ‘Can they reason?’ Nor, ‘Can they talk?’ But rather, ‘Can they suffer?’”
The fourth artist in the Fashion Week show is U.K. artist Philip McCulloch-Downs, a vegan activist since 2005 and animal rights artist since 2014.
Nonprofit organization SaveArtSpace prides itself on “placing culture over commercialism” and thus empowering artists from all walks of life with its message of social change. Since launching in 2015, the nonprofit has installed the work of more than 500 artists in 900 advertising spaces in the U.S. and U.K. If you’re in New York for Fashion Week, be sure to look up and check out this art show on billboards.
Images via SaveArtSpace