Driving through Hollywood today, I spotted a wall covered with this this Heel poster. Hmm, did Shepard Fairey get a Chihuahua? Did Kevin McCormick of Obey The Purebreed start a wheat paste campaign? I couldn't tell at 35 mph, so I drove on. Later, I saw a huge Chihuahua silhouette painted on the side of a building. That's not graffiti, I thought, that's corporate.
Shepard Fairey poster
Obey The Chihuahua poster by Kevin McCormick
I came home and Googled "Heel L.A." and discovered this website where a Chihuahua named Papi calls for his comrades to revolt against dog sweaters and being carried in purses.
With a little more research, I found some answers. According to ViralBlog, Disney started a viral marketing campaign a few days ago for their upcoming movie Beverly Hills Chihuahua. The live action film about Chloe, a Beverly Hills Chihuahua who gets lost in Mexico and needs help from other dogs to get back home, sounds like Lady and The Tramp meets The Incredible Journey. And although it is not due to be released until September 26, its YouTube video is already no. 6 on ViralBlog's top 10 viral videos of the week.
And look, influential dog bloggers like me are talking about it. Nice job, Disney, especially since the working title was South of the Border, and this was the original poster...
Cool street dog art is way better, unless Shepard Fairey and/or Obey The Purebreed have lawsuits pending. Then, I'm on their side.
5.5.08 Update: Heel posters spotted in Williamsburg, NY courtesy of Gowanus Lounge.
Update 5.17.08: Heel posters debut in Boston. Courtesy of Violentz's Flickr photostream...
Heel NYC via Michael Surtees at DesignNotes...
Is the Heel/Hillary poster a poorly done rip off of Shepard Fairey's Obama poster?
Can it be a rip off when Shehard Fairey appears to be inspired by these artists?
Or perhaps Fairey found inspiration from Chinese propaganda posters...
Or the Japanese Naval Ensign...
I'll keep you posted on this intriguing nexus of dog art, pop art, politics, and propaganda. Comments welcome.