In Busuttil’s works, her characters are rendered with an almost cartoon-like simplicity: they’re often scathingly funny and sometimes down-right pitiful. Busuttil uses visual parody as a way not only to broach political criticism, but to challenge the notion of power itself. Though many of her figures represent the ‘worst of humanity’ Busuttil makes them seem sympathetic or clumsy to bring them down to confrontable proportions. Chairman’s famous image is reduced to a few perfunctory and brutal brush strokes – the minimum required to tap into collective consciousness. A ruthless power characterised by ego and self-importance, he’s envisioned as a diva perched on an imperial throne, all coiffed hair and ridiculous dental work. Through humour Busuttil evokes the unspoken horror of how leaders are developed gradually, and how we, under the spell of their public charisma, become passive participants in their deeds.

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