Explicit images of North Korea's Supreme Leader, Kim Jong Un, have been cropping up around the world, the United Kingdom tabloid the Daily Mirror reported Monday. Graffiti depictions of Kim wearing a pink thong and sports bra have been appearing in cities throughout the world, making their way from Washington, D.C., to Tokyo to cities in Kazakhstan.
The images of a squatting, thong-wearing Kim, entitled "Nicki Kimaj," after the voluptuous pop singer Nicki Minaj, reportedly come from a graffiti artist who goes by the name Smear Leader. Little is known about Smear Leader or his origins, though he has painted images of Kim Jong Un almost exclusively throughout the United States, Brazil, Japan and other nations.
Someone in DC plastered a bunch of Kim Jong Un "artwork" on U Street pic.twitter.com/f9w50aAvdT
— Andrew Katz (@katz) September 13, 2015
— newslocker_uknews (@newslock_uknews) September 14, 2015
One of the only interviews ever conducted with Smear Leader revealed that the artist had hopes of drawing attention to the reported crimes Kim has committed, including frequently purging members of his cabinet in public executions and consistently threatening Western powers with nuclear war. "[His] oeuvre also evinces a moral seriousness," wrote James Kirchirk in an exclusive interview with the graffiti artist published in the Daily Beast Tuesday. "Smear Leader hopes to raise awareness about the dire situation in the North, a 'nightmare' of proportions not seen since 'Nazi Germany,'" wrote Kirchirk.
The artist became interested in North Korea after watching a Vice news documentary on the nation produced in 2013. Since then, Smear Leader has devoured books and documentaries on the secretive nation and centered his artistic mission on criticizing North Korea, according to the Daily Beast interview. The artist shows no signs of slowing down, and North authorities in North Korea had not yet made any statement of response to the depictions of their leader, as of Monday morning.