Toppling A Dictator

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By Emmi Bowles – Online & Deputy Features Editor


Thousands of North Koreans are imprisoned each year with no hope of being released. A lot of those behind bars are there due to standing up against the regime

UCLan 4th year Graphic Design students, Thomas McInally, Ryan Tinsley and Rob Bagnoli invited members of the public to topple a dictator.

Thomas said: “We simply want to give them a voice.”

The social experiment was to see if anybody would break the societal norms and topple a dictator.

They used the symbolism of dominoes to show that anyone can bring a dictator down. in total it took the team seven hours and 3.500 dominoes in order to create the image of Kim Jong-Un.

Once everything was in place they set up a starting line and cameras, ready for somebody to take the risk.

“The project came about after a few passing comments on dictatorship, which brought to the phrase ‘toppling a dictator’. We decided to take the phrase literally and have a play around with the idea.”  Said Rob.

“We never meant for it to cause as much as a stir as it did.” He added.

Ryan Tinsley told Pluto: “We wanted to create something that had a deeper message whilst at the same time rewarded the viewer for watching, and who isn’t interested in watching dominoes topple?”

The video was apart of their final project and was created as an advert for the Amnesty International.

The team  were very happy with the reaction it got from tutors and students.

Rob told Pluto: “The social experiment it became worked so well at getting people thinking about how societal norms here and in North Korea differ so drastically.”

The piece has been entered for the Creative Conscience Awards, which champions using creativity for socially valuable projects. The shortlist will be announce on the 10th June and the awards ceremony is held on the 2nd of July.

“Each person that views and shares this video is taking a very small step to inciting change that will affect millions of lives. That thought alone is more rewarding than any piece of paper with our names on.” Ryan added.

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