Uncle Sam


The paintings of Los Angeles based artist Danny Galieote seem to have one foot in the past and one in the future, a style that he describes as “Pop Regionalism”, combining Pop art and Regionalism art aspects. Growing up, Galieote spent much of his time listening to his grandfather’s war stories, eventually going on to work as an animator on films like The Lion King, Tarzan and Hercules at Disney’s Florida studio, a job that requires fundamental understanding of the human figure and stylizing it to suit animation. His command of drawing the figure and appreciation for art and history between the 1920s and 1950s comes together in his uniquely American imagery, recalling those days of the American heartland with apparent modern touches. 

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Uncle Sam started out as an anti-government caricature. He dates back much earlier than his rallying efforts in the Great War. In fact, his earliest known appearance was during the War of 1812. And while he was still an illustrated personification of the American government, it was far from a flattering portrayal – Uncle Sam was kind of a doofy asshole.

Historians disagree on how he got his name – either he was originally the likeness of a real-life American businessman named Sam Wilson, or it was derived from a mocking nickname given to the United States Light Dragoons (USLD), a cavalry unit whose initials were derisively said to actually stand for “Uncle Sam’s Lazy Dogs.” In any case, when Uncle Sam came into common use, it was in caricatures drawn for anti-government propaganda magazines, who basically wanted a shorthand way to represent the entire government as one cranky old shithead in a flag costume.

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Consume is my art series inspired by John Carpenter’s They Live.

Kim Kardashian

Donald Trump

Chris Hardwick

Bill Cosby

The Royals

Ronald McDonald

Caitlyn Jenner

Uncle Sam

Pharrel Williams