BUSAN, Aug. 23 (Korea Bizwire) – Pop artist Lee Byeong-ha, better known by his artist name Lee Ha, is now touring South Korea in a self-designed truck with posters and artworks satirizing current president Park Geun-hye.
Lee Ha’s modified 1-ton truck does not only ridicule the current commander-in-chief, but present and former political figures as well. At the center of the truck’s wing body is president Park in Korean traditional costume, and surrounding her are other politicians, including former presidents Park Chung-hee – who is also Park’s late father – and Lee Myung-bak.
However, being an artist, Lee Ha’s tour will also include caricature painting, film screenings, and performances by local artists. To finance his travels, he’s selling self-designed mugs, handkerchiefs, eco-bags, and notebooks.
“It is an artist’s destiny to criticize corrupt society, sing for philosophy and civilization, and connect with the people of the time,” said Lee Ha.
Lee’s protest is nothing new for him, and he has a long record of criminal charges.
In May 2012, he was indicted for posting 55 satirical posters of former president Chun Doo-hwan in Yeonhui-dong, Seoul, where Chun currently resides.
The following month, he was again indicted for violating the Public Official Election Act after posting some 200 posters ridiculing the then-presidential candidate Park around the city of Busan.
More recently, he was fined 2 million won ($1,800) for distributing some 18,000 leaflets lampooning the president in multiple cities across Korea in 2014 and 2015.
“I prepared the truck so I wouldn’t get indicted (for indiscrete distribution of leaflets), and it has worked so far.”
By Joseph Shin (firstname.lastname@example.org)