Door opener for freedom of expression

Door opener for freedom of expression


Adbusting, brandalism, culture jamming, détournement and subvertising are used overlappingly for much of the same art and activism strategies.

Subvertising is a term composed of subvert («subvert») and advertising («advertise»). The term refers to spoofing or parodying advertising posters. Forms of subversive advertising involve, for example, changing well-known logos, expressions and symbols, so that they receive a new and often surprising message.

Torggata Blad /Subverticing Norway – Oslo, Norway

Adbusting is a term composed of ad- («advertising») and busting, («take away» or «wipe away»). The term refers to changing notices and existing advertising posters by removing or adding letters.

Brandalism is a term composed of brand («brand») and vandalism («vandalism») and is used for an anti-advertising movement. This type of creative activism involves making parodies or fakes that replace advertising posters in public spaces.

Company logos and information signs are intended to give recognition, attention and positive associations to the business, but might with minor changes create the exact opposite message, preferably with a humorous touch. Subvertising, adbusting and brandalism can therefore be thought-provoking and give a new perception of what was the original intention.

Sometimes these forms of expression are considered vandalism rather than art, but the activity can also provide witty and important commentary if done wisely. E.g. the brandalists’ work to draw attention to political and social issues such as overconsumption, environmental destruction, visual pollution (advertising in public space), debt and body fascism.

Advertisements produced by these movements are often mounted over billboards or hung up in locked advertising stands owned by various companies. The locks of the advertising stands vary from country to country and from company to company, but most of these has square keyholes of the size of a regular indoor door handle. If this is true, the doors are open to full display of artistic expressions – for the good of the planet.


Check out e.g. for the procedure and the different poster sizes. Find a stand that you think has a suitable location in terms of wanted and unwanted attention. Check that the door handle can be used as a key. The keyhole should be located on the underside or on the side. Develop an excellent idea for poster design and create the motif either by hand or order it from a print shop. Get to work.