Gang of Four

The Cultural Revolution in Images -- Caricature-Posters from Guangzhou 1966-1977

In October 1976, Jiang Qing 江青, Zhang Chunqiao 張春橋, Yao Wenyuan 姚文元, and Wang Hongwen王洪文, the so called “Gang of Four”, became the targets of a propaganda campaign aimed at exposing their crimes and treacherous plans to take over the leadership of the CCP. In the posters of the collection they appear as conspirators whose main aim was to stop the development of socialism in the People’s Republic of China and to frame some of the most popular CCP’s members, such as deceased premier Zhou Enlai 周恩來. They are depicted as professional liars and murderers, greedy for power and blood. One of the recurring themes of these images is the collaboration between the members of the Gang and deceased Marshal Lin Biao 林彪 (1907-1971), who died in an air crash while fleeing China after a failed coupe d’état in 1971. In the posters, artists often depict the members of the Gang as Lin Biao’s minions, ready to help him in the organization of the coupe, the notorious 571 Plan, often mentioned in the drawings.