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Skewered by a Nose: Pinnochio and Politics July 15, 2009

Posted by leskanturek in 3-D work, Analogy, Pinocchio, Political and Social Art, Toys.
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Pinocchio and politics are not strange bedfellows. Carlo Collodi (the pen name of Carlo Lorenzini) was very much a a product of tumultuous political times in 19th century Italy when  he wrote Pinnocchio in  1881. Situations that occur in The Adventures of Pinocchio in many ways reflect Italy’s  social policy towards children at the time  (see Carl Ipsen’s book ” Italy in the Age of Pinocchio: Children and Danger in the Liberal Era“).  Over the years the image of a visibly growing nose to illustrate political lying has become as iconic (and sometimes cliché) as pinoke himself.

7208cover_s(above) Fold out cover of the August 1972, (No. 29) National Lampoon. Nixon as Pinocchio with Henry Kissinger as Jiminy Cricket. Illustration by Robert Grossman

326_Dusseldorf_Pinocchio(above) President George Bush as Pinocchio in Germany, Feb.  2004.   (Photo by Ina Fassbender)

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Burris Pinocchio Doll top(above) The  Chicago Tribune offered a fold-up version of Illinois state Senator Roland Burris as Pinocchio.

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(above) Protesters wearing (german politican) Roland Koch-pinocchio masks in Frankfurt  January  2008.

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PolitPinokeGridDemocrats, Republicans, liberals, conservatives everyone lies at some point or another  (At least so the other side claims). Death isn’t the great equalizer, Pinocchio is.  In some cases all you need is some basic photoshop skills and you too can perform a political rhinoplasty.


pinocchio G8(above) G8 leaders



(above)  “Bianocchio” or Politichio,   A comment on  Taiwanese politician and former President of the Republic of China, Chen Shui Bian.   by Taiwan’s Phalanx Studio


pinocchio-logo Great Seal

Analogy Assignment January 26, 2009

Posted by leskanturek in Analogy, Analogy Assignment, Class Assignments.
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For your next assignment you are going to create an analogy for one or more of the following stories (audio) from NPR’s This American life:

18: Liars (11.01.2002) http://www.thislife.org/Radio_Episode.aspx?episode=18

396: #1 Party School (10.18.1999) http://www.thislife.org/Radio_Episode.aspx?sched=1330

Bring in at least six different sketches, on separate sheets of paper, not in your sketchbook, either Horz. or vertical (base it on 8 X 10) . Each of these audio episodes contains a few stories so either pick one story or the overall theme. Your finish will be in color.

I would like you to write notes. What is this story really about? Create a list of adjectives to describe characters and themes in the story. Some questions to ask yourself to get started:

  • Try sketching using the 3 different types of analogies we talked about in class; logical analogy, affective analogy and a paradoxical analogy.
  • If this story involved animals what kind of animals would they be?
  • As a machine/object what kind would it be? A fairy tale /fable?
  • Look at something totally unrelated and force yourself to have it conform to your story like the xerox sheets we did in class.
  • As you’re sketching be aware of clichés. Can they be avoided?  If you’re thinking about using a cliché is there a twist you can add to it?

Research, Research, and Research

Analogies January 21, 2009

Posted by leskanturek in Analogy, Class Topics, Handout Sheets.
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An analogy is a comparison between different items usually with the idea of explaining something unknown by something known. Analogies provide insight. They can suggest that some how similarities exist between things that might seem to have nothing in common.

Analogies are every where, In literature; “U-boats prowled the coast of the island like hungry sharks…”, or ”He peter-and-wolfwas a tall as a mountain and as strong as an ox”. In music, for example Prokofiev’s musical symphony for children- Peter and the wolf (Peter youtube link) . In PATW  a range of Instruments represent different characters in the story; The Duck is an oboe, Grandfather is a bassoon, the bird is a flute. Philosophy is frequently conveyed in analogies; “be like the sapling in the wind, bending but not breaking…”. For Many years people in business studied “the Art of War” by Sun Tzu and the book of Five Rings by Miyamoto Musashi. Both books,  detailing strategies for making war on your enemies were seen as  analogies for business tactics (think hostile corporate take over’s  and getting ahead of the competition).

13987779(Above) The Book of Five Rings (Go Rin No Sho) By Miyamoto Musashi 1645

Below are three types of Analogies:

  • Logical analogies; Seek similarities between things that are different but have some trait in common. i.e.: a duck to an amphibious boat, or the branch system of a tree to the vascular system of the human body.


  • Affective Analogies: Are emotional similarities, ie: a pretty girl is like a flower or someone evil is a snake or a skunk.  A timid person is a mouse.


  • Paradoxical Analogies: Illogical combinations of images that evoke powerful emotional responses; our minds tell us no logical reason exists for these images to be together, yet since they are together we‘re forced to reconcile them. (also see class exercises).


Analogies not only are a way of explaining a  complicated phenomenon or situation in terms we are already familiar with, they also excite our creative spirit.  Here is a link to Pete Seeger’s 1967 song Waist Deep in the Big Muddy. This song was recognized  as a metaphor for the increasingly escalated war in Vietnam, so much so that CBS censored the song prior to it’s broadcast on the Smothers Brothers show.

My Favorite Analogy

Okay this might be a little self indulgent but this is a blog after all. My favorite analogy  (paradoxical  if I’m being precise) is the  “This is your Brain on Drugs ” PSA first aired in 1987. It was used as part of an anti-drug campaign  by the Partnership for a drug Free America ( a non-profit initiated by the American Association of Advertising Agencies) .  The spot invited a number of spoofs and there actually is a Fried Egg Message website.



Here is the original spot as aired.  In 1997 Rachel Leigh Cook performed in an updated version.