The guerrilla art movement is usually associated with leftwing politics. Banksy targets capitalism, consumerism and inequality. Blek le Rat, the father of stencil graffiti, depicts oppression and resistance.
Shepard Fairey gilded Barack Obama’s rise with the iconic “Hope” poster and now highlights the scapegoating of Muslims and the corporatisation of US politics.
In the Trump era, the right, however, has its own guerrilla artist: Sabo, a former US marine who works from an apartment-cum-studio in Los Angeles beneath a sign that says “Fuck Tibet”. Another says “Fuck peace”.
Under cover of darkness, he peppers public spaces in LA with images and slogans targeting liberals, whom he associates with “pot-smoking lazy bums” hostile to western values. He puts the same images and slogans on posters, T-shirts and pins which he sells from his website and at Republican party gatherings across the US.
“I think leftism is a mental disorder,” Sabo, 49, said in an interview at his home. “I truly believe I’m fighting the good fight.”
He has decorated his home with samples of his work: a framed toilet seat with Barack Obama’s face and mouth; a life-sized poster of Bernie Sanders with Soviet tattoos and diaper “full of free shit”; a billboard-style portrait of Hillary Clinton as a maniacal queen.
Another billboard declares that “Black lives are just matter”, accompanied by a Planned Parenthood logo and an abortion-themed punchline: “We’ve killed more blacks than the klan.”
The left, he said, has mastered cultural and political “dark arts” and “weaponised” Hollywood, the FBI, the IRS, universities and other institutions to promote a nefarious agenda.
He claimed Islam was taking over Europe and espoused debunked conspiracy theories: Obama is a Muslim who sought to undermine America, and senior Democrats literally worship the devil and run pedophile rings. “I truly believe Hillary is demonic.”
Challenged for evidence, Sabo cited leaked emails, which online conspiracy theorists claimed proved the accusations. “I’m a fan of logic and reason.”
The fan of logic and reason also lamented America’s polarisation. “The whole climate is sick right now.” Asked if his work contributed to that sickness, Sabo shook his head. “The left are the ones who dehumanise.”