TO MAIN ART GALLERY
Pasaran" (They Shall not Pass)
Mark Vallen 1984
Poster 17" x 21"
the slogan No Pasaran forever carries the weight
of history, rooted as it is in the struggles of Spain
and Nicaragua, it has come to exemplify so much more;
the words have new relevance in the 21st century.
No Pasaran spells out defiance to all those
who would divide and crush the people underfoot.
1979 the Nicaraguan people overthrew the U.S. backed
dictatorship of Anastasio Somoza. I created No
Pasaran as a silkscreen street poster in 1984
when Nicaragua was under attack from the Contras,
those right-wing Nicaraguans who were trained, armed,
and funded by the Reagan administration. No Pasaran
was a popular expression throughout Nicaragua, Central
America, and the world; the words illustrated a determination
to resist those who wage unjust wars.
slogan No Pasaran (They shall not pass), first
appeared during the days of the Spanish Republic (1931-1939),
when the people overthrew the king and established
a democracy. In 1936 General Francisco Franco attempted
a military coup to preserve the old order; the people
who vowed to defend Spain from falling to his fascist
army used No Pasaran as their battle cry.
silkscreen poster proved so popular that I self-published
it as an offset poster. Thousands of copies were distributed
for free at antiwar protests in Los Angeles, and a
network was set up to assure their distribution across
the western hemisphere and beyond. A few of those
offset posters are still available and offered for
sale on this page."