BP: Beyond PR

Rebranding the oil giant that permanently branded the Gulf of Mexico.
BP: Beyond PR

When Swiss illustrator Christoph Hitz first heard about the BP oil spill, he thought, "What the hell is going on? These guys portray themselves as a green company, then drill the ocean floor as though it were Mars, some void space?" He was outraged by the hypocrisy.

Growing up as he did in Switzerland, birthplace of Helvetica and sleek designs, to him "a logo is like a family shield, a badge of honor." So he sat down to document how BP's eco-branding clashed with the company's response in the Gulf.

First, he subverted BP's trademark flowery green mandala and swapped "British Petroleum" for the new backronyms "Bungled Puddle," "Bye Planet," and "Bold Pricks," among others. Then he illustrated the new backronyms accordingly, in familiar green, yellow, black, and white.

The results, shown here in slideshow form, present a jarring visual protest of BP's corporate handling of a growing ecological disaster.Laura McClure

For the latest political coverage of the BP oil spill from Mother Jones' environmental reporter Kate Sheppard, click here. For on-the-beach dispatches from Mac McClelland, click here. Mother Jones' ongoing coverage of the BP spill is here.

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