Thursday, 1 March 2018

The Tale of Two Foreheads




Bonil, January 22, 2018.
"The international help to Venezuela".


The Venezuelans are at the edge of life's existence. They are dying slowly and painfully from starvation and there is no action taken to prevent it. They are dying from their government's lack of ability to manage the country in spite of its having one of the richest oil reserves in the world. Corruption and poor management on all levels reign supreme with President Nicolas Maduro as the present face of the state of the matter. 

So Bonil places the moral dilemma before us: Is there a difference, an asymmetry between doing and allowing harm? Is allowing starvation to take place possibly on par with causing it? 

Bonil refuses to give answers. 

That is a strength of his art. Instead - because there is an asymmetry between refining a statement and closing it with an answer - he is critically laying out, who does and who does not and he for his part does so with painful clarity using opposing drawing techniques. The cry out for help remains enclosed on the screen in the hammock within an enclosure with only drip wise effect. Layer upon layer, which engulfs the tragedy. Mixing in too much white will make for a greyish slur and so the reality of the "Oh, we hear you!" from the international community is one of an all-abounding inertia, where hardly any movement can be detected.

Bonil, January 18, 2018:
Paraphrasing the Cuban revolutionary motto "homeland or death", Maduro
lets his firearm do the talking: "BANG!land or death"
- with the response: "BANG! we are". 
The inertia is all the more violent compared to the detailed drawn portrayal of Maduro in power. He is all action, not directing his firepower directly at us, but he is dramatically letting it take over the length of the picture plane.

When Maduro met Pope Francis last autumn, it so happened that he gesticulated exactly like that, using his hands, naturally, but taking on the action, with the Pope smiling - in conjunction or dismay. Whichever of the two, Pope Francis has been keeping that smile of disconnect.

Which takes us right back to inertia. Pope Francis has been speaking in euphemisms such as passives and abstract imagery on the matter, and so he forms the third layer to Bonil's analysis of the predicament of the Venezuelans. He is drawn with the oversized head that is an effect Bonil has been using lately to place utterances in accordance with the oversized egos of those who uttered them. Here there is smiling nothingness, hands on his back. Exactly his demeanour when standing next to the finger-pointing Maduro.

Maduro had no fear in calling two of the Pope's own bishops in Venezuela for the devil's work, declaring they were committing hate-crimes for speaking up against hunger and corruption.

Meanwhile, Pope Francis is standing next to one of those, who took the bullet to his forehead. He is the only one of direct speech and eyes on us. Whatever may have met the forehead of the Pope it bounced back.

Exhibits No. A, B, and C from the pen of Bonil.


Bonil, January 28, 2018.
- 13 American presidents, 28 from Europe has put sanctions on Maduro
- and the boss of the Vatican will not even say The Lord's Prayer.



The cartoons shown are courtesy of Bonil and must not be reproduced without his permission.



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