CAPE TO CAIRO
This is the first poster I designed for The Name Game, a series of posters that forms one component of the Equations for a Body at Rest project. These posters were on display at different billboard sites across Birmingham during the Commonwealth Games in 2022.
This poster points directly at the hubris that informed Britain’s imperial project. It takes its inspiration from two visually similar images. The first is the promotional poster for the Games in Sydney, Australia in 1938, which shows a hurdler striding across the Sydney harbour. The second is the famous cartoon showing mining magnate and politician Cecil John Rhodes straddling the African continent with a telegraph wire in his hands. This is a visual representation of Rhodes’ famous desire to connect the British colonies in Africa by means of rail and telegraph lines stretching all the way from Cape Town to Cairo.
Until the early years of the 20th century, the British government enforced and/or encouraged white colonial settlement, the assumption being that large numbers of settlers were needed to maximise economic benefit for the Mother Country.
From the nineteenth century onwards, British-controlled territories on world maps were coloured pink. While red was the colour traditionally associated with the British Empire
The Rhodes Colossus is a cartoon by English cartoonist Edward Linley Sambourne, published by Punch magazine in England in December, 1892.
The first poster I designed for the series The Name Game, titled Cape to Cairo, drew inspiration from two visually similar images.
Commonwealth historian Linda Colley, commenting on an Imperial Federation map depicting the extent of the British Empire in 1886, noted that the globe is depicted using the Mercator projection, centered on the Greenwich meridian.