Artist’s Statement

By TJ Leon

Our group researched gentrification, specifically gentrification in San Francisco’s Bay Area. We chose to satirize the gentrification that resulted from tech workers moving into the city. The poster we used to satirize was Get Hard or as we called it Get Hip  starring Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart, since the movie poster already had cultural appropriation as a focal point in its design, it was a good place to start.

Get Hard features Will as a white collar businessman who is convicted and asks Kevin, his black car washer, to help his assimilate into jail. We put Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg as Will and S.F. mayor Ed Lee as Kevin.  We thought this was a good parallel to Mayor Ed Lee helping Zuckerberg assimilate into the Mission district of San Francisco, that will most likely lead to the inflation of rent prices in the once affordable neighborhood.

Though the original movie poster did not have the credits there was plenty of space in the design to add them. We replaced the movies tag line (an education in incarceration) to an education in gentrification. Our movie production company is Trustafarian Pictures using the term for privileged people who choose to live like they’re poorer than they are by living in non affluent areas and attracting young urban professionals (Yuppies) to the live there.  With the new residents who either come from wealth or are creating their own comes cultural appropriation (like Iggy Azalea, which is why we chose her as the musician for the movie), wealth for big/new businesses. Thus paving the way for

capitalism, enabling economic growth, leading city council to favor new residents and corporate businesses. We put “NIMBYS” (Not-In-My-Back-Yard-ers) as directors to mock that they control much of San Francisco’s housing development decisions. For our R ratings we changed the reasons for caution to racial bias, displacement of lower class and historical residents, some urban renewal and development because they are the aspects of gentrification or urban development that negatively affect people.


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