Red Paint: Transnational Movements of Deconstructing, Decolonizing, and Defacing Colonial Structures
This article examines the symbolic nature of using red paint on established colonial structures with transnational connections. When used by indigenous people on structures installed by or deemed to represent colonial powers, it becomes a shared act of reclamation and connects to a deeper connected history, subverting both the structure and the narrative it produces in its defacement. Deconstructing these colonial “relics” with the use of red paint repurposes them as decolonizing instruments. In this article, three case studies are employed to follow the evolving use of red paint on colonial structures and how this illustrates an attempt to create transnational-indigenous decolonizing practices. I begin with an exploration on the occupation of Alcatraz. The transnational connection is picked up when red paint is poured onto colonial monuments and used to inscribe messages around these structures of memory, explored in Tasmania and Namibia. I argue that red paint stands in as a practice of continued decolonizing, and an attempt to interrupt the colonial enshrinements in the nationalized narratives.
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2019 Jeremiah Garsha
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).