I designed and printed these back in 2007, almost fifteen years ago. Back then I was much more strident in my anarchism, and had a chip on my shoulder about the popularity of Che Guevara. I have to admit he’s still not my favorite, but I’ve come to understand and value the role he has played a symbol of revolution, particularly in Latin America.
Anyway, after reading a number of biographies, mostly sympathetic, it was clear to me that he really wasn’t such a nice guy, and beyond that, was extremely cavalier with life, particularly others’ lives. So I pulled a series of anecdotes about him I found particularly troubling, and designed Communist propaganda-style posters illustrating them.
The first is titled Hatred, and focuses on Che’s blood lust:
The second is Authoritarian, and speaks to his love of strong men such as Stalin:
And the third is Arrogance, and is a quote from him taken after the Cuban Missile Crisis, in which he blithely claims he would have launched nuclear missiles:
All together, they paint a fairly disturbing picture. Granted, I’ve cherry-picked quotes and situations, but I still think they put a pallor over the Che brand. Or so I hoped, but given the response I got when I showed them—which was mostly “oh yeah, Che is awesome!”—I decided to shelve the project, and never showed or distributed these beyond a very small circle.
So now I’ve unearthed them, and decided to put them up here in case anyone is interested. It was a worthwhile exercise for me as a young designer/printer, and while I’m not that interested in Che-bashing these days, they’re interesting artifacts of a moment.