Everything's fine

This little bit of stenciled simplicity is one that is easily overlooked, and one friend even commented that it looked a bit “barato” (cheap). And I imagine that from his point of view there’s really nothing to see here. But for me, this stencil represents that archetypal American post-war smile. We won the war, everything’s ok, drive a big car, cookie cutter house, Stepford wife and duck and cover in case of attack. Or at least that would be the idea on the plain white background. On this red background, sprinkled with graffiti, he becomes someone different. Placed against this decidedly more chaotic backdrop, what is his smile saying?

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