Gilbert Baker, American artist who created the rainbow flag, is being honored by Google Doodle this Friday (2). The flag, which bears the rainbow, is the greatest symbol of the gay community (LGBTQA +). Baker would be 66 years old if he were alive. The image, which illustrates the search giant’s home page, is a .gif that recreates the assembly of the flag, with the union of several colored strips in a studio.
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Doodle in honor of Gilbert Baker, the creator of the rainbow flag – Photo: Reproduction / Google
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Gilbert Baker was born on June 2, 1951, in the American state of Kansas. At the age of 19, in 1970, he started his career in the United States Army, which he left in 1972. This took him to San Francisco, just at the time when the LGBT movement started to gain strength. To help, he learned to sew by himself. That way he could make flags and posters for demonstrations and protests. According to Baker, the movement needed something beautiful and that represented them.
Baker died on March 31, 2017. The cause of his death, however, has not yet been disclosed. A close friend, Cleve Jones, just told the American press that Baker died in his sleep and at peace.
Gilbert Baker was the creator of the rainbow flag that represents the LGBTQA + community – Photo: Reproduction / Wikipedia
The flag came about because of a challenge made by a close friend of Gilbert, politician Harvey Milk, an activist for the LGBT cause in the 70s. Milk challenged his friend to create a symbol for the cause, which would represent gay pride and freedom . Before the rainbow flag, the LGBT community wore a pink triangle – a sad and painful mark – used by the Nazis to identify homosexuals in concentration camps in World War II.
Although the colors have changed, each one represents one of the values of the LGBTQA + community around the globe. Originally, the banderia had eight colors, currently it has only six – a simpler and more popular version. The original version, from 1978, had two additional stripes – hot pink and turquoise – which were removed due to difficulties in manufacturing.
Meaning of the eight initial colors of the Rainbow Flag – Photo: Reproduction / Wikipedia
According to the «LGBT Brasil» portal, the hot pink color represents sex; red represents life; yellow in the sunlight; orange the cure and power; green is nature; the blue love for the artistic; the purple the willpower and the turquoise harmony and pacification. «The rainbow as a symbol is perfect because it encompasses diversity in terms of gender, race and age,» said Baker.
«The rainbow as a symbol is perfect because it encompasses diversity,» said Baker
Thus, on June 25, 1978, the rainbow flag was displayed for the first time at the San Francisco Gay Freedom Day Parade. This story is told in more detail in the 2008 film Milk, which portrays the story of politician Harvey Milk and his struggle for the LGBT cause until his assassination in November 1978.
The rainbow flag also broke some records. In 1994, Baker sewed the largest flag in the world, 1.6 km long. It was extended in the UN building. In 2003, the activist broke his own record, sewing a 2 km flag that crossed the entire city of Key West, USA.
The six-color version of the pride flag is more common – Photo: Reproduction / Wikipedia
The Google team responsible for Doodle took a trip to the fabric stores in San Francisco, in the United States, to film the colored cut out. Later the video became the animation present in the search engine. The site is just a few meters from where Baker originally created the flag.
Doodle creation process in honor of Gilbert Baker – Photo: Reproduction / Google
Google’s homage goes beyond Doodle on its homepage. By clicking on the animated image, we are directed to a slightly different results page, with colored bands on the sides still simulating the famous flag.
Doodle colors today’s Google search – Photo: Reproduction / Carolina Ochsendorf
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Video shows the history of Google Doodle
The history of Google Doodles