Rep. Henry Waxman of California called BP officials incompetent, Rep. Cliff Stearns of Florida asked them to resign, and Rep. Ahn Cao of Louisiana suggested hari kari. But it wasn't Capitol Hill that delivered the sharpest condemnation of the oil giant and its criminally negligent employees — it was the artistic community.
A picture is certainly worth a thousand words, especially when attempting to process a catastrophe as enormous and incomprehensible as the sinking of the Deepwater Horizon. And it was the community of online artists and designers who delivered the message in a way that will never be forgotten.
The online contest website LogoMyWay launched a BP Logo redesign contest with the simplest of creative briefs: "Help Redesign BP's logo! They need a NEW Brand." The one month contest (nine days left) has already yielded 756 entries.
There are plenty of fantastic revisionings of the now infamous BP "helios" logo which was introduced in 2000 to help the company rebrand itself as a pioneer in green energy. But none, I think, are more compelling than the mashup of the famous Vietnam era photo with an oil pump aimed point blank at a helpless victim (read Gulf resident).
It communicates the violence of the BP's nearly total disregard of human and environmental safety in a way that few have been able to capture.
Greenpeace also launched its own-BP logo contest, with the winning entry being plastered on a prominent location in the UK. And several impromptu artist interpretations of the oil spill showing two of our greatest aquatic icons drowning in oil muck...