The Oregon based artist and writer Michael James Schneider has found a playful, offbeat and striking way to confront hateful and virulent people on social networks. While we would normally tend to “deflower” the profiles of those who pollute the networks with racist, sexist, reactionary messages, Schneider defies them with his graphic creations made of inflatable balloons. Displayed in the street, these usually festive balloons spread politically committed messages, made accessible thanks to the lightness conveyed by the use of these colourful objects.
“I’m inspired by the comments on the networks, I’m trying to hijack this medium. Balloons were a thing that worked on the networks, they are often used in weddings and pre-natal parties where the gender of the babies is revealed, so they were a disruptive and natural way to approach this process of deconstructing preconceived ideas. I like the contrast between deep, funny or provocative quotes written with objects considered as accessories, secondary. I also reappropriate the selfie, this uncontrollable fashion, I tend to put myself in the scene in most of the photos. They often make people wince, but that’s exactly the point,” said Michael James Schneider.