Changing the World: Visual Activism

Featured image  Krumlauf, Alissa. Strom Water (Fashion Meets Storm Water), 2012, Canvas Print. Http://Tdsblog.Com/What-A-Thirsty-Industry-Fashion-Is7474-2/

In today’s Modern Western culture there are numerous issues to face and challenge as a community. In today’s 21st century society, we challenge society in a new way called visual activism. Through visual forms we can comment/raise awareness and change on social and political issues. This visual activism has become more prominent in today’s western culture, due the vast variety of visual content that is being created every single day and the world collective medium of the internet, people are creating awareness and pushing for social change through visual activism. Creating content that people can see creates and awareness and a personised voice. It’s a visual representation on how people living in the society feel about the world they live in, and creating pressure for this to change. In Mirzoeff book How to See the World he states (289) “visual culture is a way to create forms of change”. We can see this visual activism in movements like “Occupy Wall street” and “pro-choice movements” that had visual culture supporting these movements (posters, social media hashtags, photographs, artworks, creating awareness and pressure to encourage change.  Something I want to look further into is the movement of Ethical Fashion. There is a real awaking in the fashion industry about how sustainable it truly is. As consumers in the western culture we don’t stop and think about the actual cost of the clothes we are buying. There is a huge issue with the fashion industry and I think people turn a blind eye about the harsh reality’s this type of consumerism is creating. Human rights, environmental, globalisation and consumerism are just some of the issue the industry is facing. I want to see how visual activism can create awareness and even social pressure to create change. In the trailer for the documentary (The True Cost, 1.27) a women states “the actual business model is completely unsustainable, unless you redefine the model, you can’t change a thing”. One person simply can’t create change, however though visual activism, together we can create change.




Works cited

Mirzoeff, Nicholas. “Changing the World & Afterword”. How to See the World, Pelican, 2015, pp.298.

Morgan, Andrew. “The True Cost official trailer, 2015”. YouTube, Uploaded by Movie clips Film Festivals & Indie Films, Jun 9 2015,


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