Saint Hoax is a pseudonymous Syrian artist, satirist and socio-political activist. He uses various mediums (including oil painting, lenticular printing and digital printing) to subversively depict political and popular figures. He's also known for taking Disney characters out of context and using them for social awareness.
War Drags You Out
War Drags You Out is a series of digital illustrations depicting prominent political and religious figures as drag queens. The project was shared on January 2014, and it is the first to be published under the pseudonym Saint Hoax. The artist received multiple death threats shortly after publishing the project due to his inclusion of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia and Osama bin Laden in the series. The depiction of the late king and bin Laden offended religious extremists and made the artist a target for criticism and death threats. Some of the threats were publicly shared on Hoax's social media accounts, others were sent directly to his email address. However, the project was well received by the media and praised as a strong political commentary.
Right after Donald Trump formally announced his candidacy on June 2015, Saint Hoax began his anti-Trump art movement. He continuously creates subversive visuals and videos as a form of opposition to the candidates values and beliefs.
On October 2015, Trump gave a speech saying that he will send Syrian refugees back to their war-torn country if he wins the elections. Being a Syrian citizen himself, Saint Hoax launched a campaign against Trump by manufacturing and selling blow-up dolls modeled after the candidate. The proceeds from the sales of the campaign went directly to the UN Refugee Agency to provide food, clothes and blankets to Syrian refugees. The project was heavily shared by international media and the Blow-Up Trump dolls were sold out 2 weeks after the launch of the campaign.
In June 2014, Saint Hoax published Princest Diaries, his first social campaign to promote sexual abuse awareness and encourage victims to report their attackers. The series portrayed Disney princesses as sexually abused victims. The campaign was rapidly spread all over the internet and it generated a lot of controversy. Critics were split in half, some deemed it as inappropriate while others praised it as courageous for breaking the silence on a taboo topic.
Happy Never After
Following the success of his first social campaign, Hoax published his second awareness project entitled Happy Never After. Using a similar illustration technique, the artist used Disney princesses again to spread awareness about domestic violence. The princesses were illustrated with bruises on their faces and a slogan that read "When did he stop treating you like a princess?" accompanied the visuals. Hours after the posters were published on the artist's website, the campaign went viral. Happy Never After became one of the most shared domestic violence campaign. In November 2014, it was used as the official anti-domestic violence campaign in Amsterdam.
Once Upon A War
In March 2016, Saint Hoax visited a Syrian refugee camp in Akkar, Lebanon and photographed Syrian girls dressed as Disney princesses. This was a collaborative project with Plastik Magazine, Beirut based visual magazine, and MALAAK, an Akkar-based NGO that builds schools for Syrian refugees and provides aid. The proceeds of the project went directly to MALAAK.
Saint Hoax is known for using social media as a main platform to publish most of his work. Since creating his social media accounts in January 2014, he has been engaging with audiences on daily basis.
His work has been shared by Madonna on International Women's Day. The digital illustration of Madonna kissing Snow white referenced Madonna, Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera's famous performance at the MTV Video Music Awards in 2003. People were divided between supporting and attacking Madonna for sharing the subversive image.
Hoax's work was highlighted again when reality television personality, Kylie Jenner, shared a parody video created by the artist. The video compares the Kardashians to the characters in the teen comedy film, Mean Girls.
- 2018: "MonuMental", Plastik Gallery, Beirut
- 2016: "Is That All There Is ", Guy Hepner, New York
- 2015: "POPlitically Incorrect", The Adler Subhashok Gallery, Bangkok
- 2015: Art Palm Beach, The Adler Subhashok Gallery, Florida
- 2014: Singapore Art Fair, The Adler Subhashok Gallery, Singapore
- 2014: Beirut Art Fair, Plastik Gallery, Beirut
- Editor, Sara Boboltz Entertainment; Post, The Huffington (2015-10-12). "Now You Can Buy Your Own Trump Blow-Up Doll (For A Good Cause)". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- Rogers, Katie (2015-10-21). "Disney Princesses, Remade for the Instagram Age". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- Karlan, Sarah (February 24, 2014). "Artist Turns Powerful Political Figures Into Fabulous Drag Queens". Buzzfeed. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- Dunning, Jennifer. "Artist turns Vladimir Putin, Barack Obama into drag queens - Your Community". CBC.ca. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- Post, James Nichols The Huffington (2014-02-25). "LOOK: Artist Faces Death Threats For These Controversial Images". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- Nasr, Reem (2015-06-16). "Donald Trump announces candidacy for president". CNBC. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- "Trump: If I Win, Syrian Refugees Are Going Back". The Huffington Post. 2015-10-01. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- Reporter, Lauren Duca Entertainment; Post, The Huffington (2014-06-26). "Disney Princess Posters Promote Sexual Abuse Awareness". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- Taube, Aaron (June 27, 2014). "These Ads Use Disney Characters To Tell An Extremely Disturbing Story". Business Insider. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- Dockterman, Eliana. "Sexual Assault Awareness Campaign Uses Disney Princesses to Make a Point". TIME.com. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- Peters, Lucia. "Saint Hoax's "Happy Never After" Series Uses Disney Princesses to Make a Powerful Statement". Bustle. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- "Princesses of war: Syrian refugee girls dress up as Disney's heroines". Daily Mail. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- "An Artist Dressed Syrian Refugees as Disney Princesses and Asked Them to Share Their Dreams". Cosmopolitan. 2016-03-09. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- "Disney Princess Food Mashups by Saint Hoax". Paste Magazine. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- "Featured Artist: Saint Hoax". The Seventh Wave. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- Khan, Maria (2015-03-09). "Madonna stirs a storm by posting artwork of her kissing Snow White on Instagram". IB Times. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- "This artwork of Madonna kissing Snow White has sparked outrage". Independent. 2015-03-09. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- "Madonna Is Making Out With Disney Princesses Now". MTV. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- "Kylie Jenner Compares Kim Kardashian to Regina George in New Instagram Video". Life and Style Magazine. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- "Instagram video by Kylie • Jan 28, 2016 at 11:47pm UTC". Instagram. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
- "Saint Hoax Presents 'Is That All There Is?' - Guy Hepner Gallery".