“We The People”

“We The People”

Oil Paint and Gum Wrappers


We the people is a painting based around the American Government, not allowing the people to speak their voices to influence change. A king or person in power is depicted with his crown right side up (or upside down) in the lower-left corner. He opens his mouth to show his hollow teeth and diseased tongue. The display of facial expression suggests he is making the same noise as a spoiled child (hence the gum/candy wrappers). The lower right corner shows an empty torso with silver nipples and a hand reaching towards the king, almost touching him. The torso is a symbol of the lack of rights or voices some individuals in America have, and the reaching hand is a plead from those people to their corrupt government. The silver nipples highlight/emphasize that both sexes experience this lack of right (one more than the other). The sword violently separates the piece in half, suggesting a strong divide between the upper (hope) and the lower (hopelessness). The upper right corner shows a bird in shock as the king’s sword cuts its head off. This represents the result of the king’s absence to help its people. However, with chaos in its eye, bone exposed, and blood nowhere on the king’s sword, its mouth still opens to shout to let it sing (upper left). The phrase “Let the Bird Sing” encourages the viewer to listen to the individual whose songs are cut short due to the king’s disloyalty to his people and childlike nature.

About the Artist

Reneé Garzillo,  Centre County
Published:  November 9, 2020