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Absent

-Who’s the man behind the nickname “Absent”?
It doesn’t matter who I am, it doesn’t matter how I am, it doesn’t matter how old I am, it doesn’t matter to which social class I belong, what my education is, my profession… nothing matters. The only thing that matters is what the reader in the street observes. I am absent, he is alone with my work. I like to be absent from what is going on so that, as an external observer, I can have a more rational, a more neutral approach.

-What’s your technique?
The technique is engraving. If you want to be more detailed, it’s an engraving combined with collagraphy. First you decide the design you want to do, the face. After getting the design and any accompanying text done, you then have to copy them on linoleum where they will later be carved.

-What can you achieve with this makeshift typography?
You can spread your word. And since propaganda is closely related with the control of information, this gives you the weapon of counter-propaganda. You can penetrate the communicational vacuums between the rulers and the ones who are ruled and offer your own counter-information, which in my case is satire. The satire I use is purposefully below the belt. Someone is holding our fate in their hands, without being accountable for it. Hence the reason why I take the fate of his image, his public image, to conquer it, to take it into my own hands so as to balance things out. Behind every person who poses himself as a contender to power there is an entire mechanism of media exposure. I step in with only 3 euros and I can destroy this mechanism of media exposure. I can ridicule him all around the city. It’s my duty to do it in order to protect the freedoms that he tries to grab from me.

-How do you define yourself politically?
I’m a tax-paying citizen. I have demands. You can’t take my money, you can’t accuse the people of tax-evasion. The utter crook, as far as taxation is concerned, is the state itself. We pay for social insurance. We pay to have a pension. Right now we have none of the above. Why should we pay for them? I am absolutely a democrat. But being a democrat doesn’t mean that I am obliged to obey anticonstitutional concoctions simply because they were voted for. A democracy is not a system where the people vote every 4 years but they end up having something different in their hands than what they originally voted for. Therefore the politicians shouldn’t say “you voted for us, we have the right to be like dictators for the next 4 years”. This is not a democracy. No one has the right to behave like a dictator, not for 4 years, not for 3, not for 2, not for zero.

If you want to find out more about Absent you can visit his blog at http://absentcomics.blogspot.gr/