The Null Device

Van Thanh Rudd, Banksy copyist

Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd's nephew, Van Thanh Rudd, is entering a stencil-style painting (of Ronald McDonald carrying an Olympic torch past a burning monk), in an exhibition in Vietnam; a painting which bears a striking resemblance to a Banksy piece:
Rudd has acknowledged the similarity, claiming that it is "a direct reference 2 Banksy". (I wonder whether he acknowledged the fact that about half of the painting is a copy of another, more famous, work when he applied for the exhibition, or only now.) Of course, there have been works which were even more copied (most notably Marchel Duchamp's "L.H.O.O.Q.", i.e., a postcard of the Mona Lisa with a mustache drawn on, or Andy Warhol's Campbell's Soup cans), though those were commentaries on the original work, the artistic process or the nature of originality. Rudd's work, however, appears to be intended as a commentary on the Olympics/American imperialism/Chinese oppression of Tibet (delete as applicable), and thus such an explanation doesn't hold water.

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