When you think of many of this year’s Best Picture nominees, movies like The Revenant, The Martian, and Mad Max share a common theme of strength, resilience, determination, and power.
These themes are stunningly carried over into Shutterstock’s pop-art posters this year. Posters featured include Jordan Roland’s Warhol-inspired Mad Max: Fury Road, which offer a take on Warhol’s “subversive dictator portraits to shape this poster of Immortan Joe,” says the artist. In Cristin Burton’s Flirst-inspired Oscar Pop 2016 The Revenant, the poster includes assembled pieces the artist used to “create a vast, sinister, and lonely landscape.”
The pop-art posters include a fun view of movies but also of topics that aren’t so fun. In Flo Lau’s The Big Short, inspired by Keith Haring, the artist chose a comedic approach to the dark subject of the bursting of the 2008 housing bubble.
Flirst is a collage artist who assembles disparate pieces to explore how he can change the harmony of the whole. For my poster, a homage to The Revenant, I assembled pieces to create a vast, sinister, and lonely landscape. The poster features a figure with very few people on his side; this represents the film’s main character, Hugh Glass, who was brutally attacked by a bear and left for dead in the winter wilderness.
In his “Barcelona” series, Mario Corea Aiello forms a grungy collage of newspaper and magazine cutouts and heavy paint strokes. I felt this style would parallel the vicious storm that left Mark Watney for dead on Mars in The Martian. For the color scheme, I deferred to Eric White’s cover art from the original novel by Andy Weir to capture the characteristics of an otherworldly storm.
My inspiration for this poster is one part Roy Lichtenstein and one part Stefan Sagmeister. Spotlight is about journalists uncovering a massive scandal in one of Boston’s oldest institutions, and I found that the perfectly contradictory homophone “pray/prey” encapsulates the shock and horror felt by the community when this scandal was made public
To illustrate this, I pixelated an image of a priest, then tore off his head and replaced it with an image of a wolf. I looked to Warhol’s subversive dictator portraits to shape this poster of Immortan Joe.Warhol had a remarkable ability to distract from the meaning of his art. On the surface his work simply looks “cool”.
Mad Max: Fury Road has the same effect: The stylized nature of the film gets more attention than the meaning behind it.
I chose to feature Immortan Joe because he is a terrible person, but his iconic look makes him instantly recognizable. When I first read the plot summary for Room, I envisioned lonely, sterile characters, who had been institutionalized by their secluded environment.
Of course, when I saw the movie that perception quickly changed; the characters are full of life, love, and joy, and the audience instantly empathizes with them on a raw, human level. KAWS’ statues play on a similar deceit. Initially they have a sterile, robotic feel, but when you view them in their human-scale sizes and see their playful aesthetic, you experience an unexpected sense of connection.