In this edition : in Thailand, anti-government protests turn stylish; Google buses attract criticism in San Francisco; and an Italian artist brings masterpieces to life.
PROTESTING WITH STYLE IN THAILAND
In Bangkok, anti-government protests sometimes look more like cat walk shows. On social networks, young fashionistas show off in photos during gatherings, often wearing blue, white and red- the colours of the national flag. And a Facebook page, more resembling a beauty contest, is entirely dedicated to the protest’s most beautiful women.
Despite the violence, taking part in the protests against Prime Minister, Yingluck Shinawatra has become fashionable among the country’s upper classes. Numerous celebrities, such as actor, Tack Pharunyoo, attend protests and pose for photos with the movement’s leaders. Model Metinee Kingpayome, openly expresses her political involvement and has posed to advertise a designer t-shirt created to support the protesters.
A fashion on which specialised magazines are surfing, just like IMAGE Magazine which, in recent weeks has published a series of pictures on the theme of glamorous protesters, offering advice to readers on ways to protest in style.
And industrial players are clearly not being left out. Several designers have launched clothing ranges sold in the surroundings of places occupied by protesters. Meanwhile, a television channel supporting the movement has opted to tap into the whistle market, which has become the symbol of the anti-government revolt, with a gold version sold for 100,000 bahts, or more than 2,000 euros.
PROTESTS AGAINST GOOGLE BUSES IN SAN FRANCISCO
American rap group, “Cachebox”, have released a song criticising Google buses, the ultra-luxury vehicles driving around San Francisco. Provided by the web giant to transport employees, the buses are targeted as the level of comfort they offer is deemed indecent. A satirical video, fuelling the debate which has continued to grow in amplitude in recent weeks.
Last month, the inhabitants of San Francisco and its suburbs blocked Google buses on several occasions and even broke the windscreen of one vehicle in Oakland. Chanting slogans such as, ‘San Francisco is not for sale’, the protesters criticise Google in particular for causing rent increases by encouraging rich employees from Silicon Valley to move to San Francisco, leading to thousands of evictions.
There are even signs of the protests on the city’s walls. As shown by some social network users many posters denounce these buses, which have become symbols of inequality between inhabitants, whether they are owned by Google or by other Silicon Valley companies, such as Apple, Facebook, and Yahoo.
The debate has also inspired two San Francisco artists, Colleen Flaherty and Matteo Bittanti, who depict miniature Google buses in a series of sculptures entitled, ‘The Streetviews of San Francisco’. The sculptures can be seen on their site, which highlights changes to the urban landscape, where instability and wealth rub shoulders. A phenomenon, which according to the two artists, has lead San Francisco to ‘lose its soul’.
NOW TRENDING ON SOCIAL NETWORKS
#ElephantsLive is the hasthag recently created by the mammal protection NGO ‘Space for Giants’, to allow Twitter users to follow the daily lives of Kimani, Carlos, Tyson and Evgeny, 4 elephants living in Kenya. Users can obtain all sorts of information about these animals, such as the numbers of kilometres they travel each day and the other species they mix with. The project aims to raise awareness of the need to protect the animals’ living environment.
STATS OF THE DAY
Which are the world’s most photographed cities? This is the question Google’s latest interactive map attempts to answer. The tool, known as ‘Sightmap’, is created from millions of geolocalised pictures published on the web by net users, using the share service, Panoramio. New York appears to be the most photographed city by tourists, ahead of Rome, Barcelona and Paris.
FUNNY BABY COSTUMES BY ERIC MALOBERTI
‘One day, my child, you will be’ is the name of this series of pictures, taken by Frenchman, Eric Maloberti, better known by his nickname, Malo. The charming images depict his baby daughter in a range of uniforms and disguises, including that of a priest, a lawyer, a butcher, a boxer and a ballerina. The photos can be viewed on the site, malo-photos.com.
VIDEO OF THE DAY
This video by Italian, Rino Stefano Tagliafierro, named “Beauty”, invites us to discover works by great painters from the Renaissance to the nineteenth century, coming to life as if by magic. The spellbinding video pays tribute to one hundred and sixteen Master’s paintings and was created using the ‘cut-out’ technique, a process which meticulously removes subjects from paintings.