Empire Marketing Board Posters
Manchester Art Gallery
- Scala’s 4-fold format is ideally suited to reproducing, in full and in detail, works from this important collection of posters
- A fascinating and challenging evaluation that helps build an understanding of what these posters mean today
Manchester Art Gallery’s little-known collection of posters, commissioned by the British Government’s Empire Marketing Board (EMB) between 1926 and 1933, is a fascinating subject, and a welcome addition to Scala’s popular 4-fold series. The EMB’s main functions were to research the production, trade and use of goods throughout the British Empire and to promote the idea of ‘Buying Empire’. A product of their time, these posters, whilst visually stunning, also raise difficult questions for a contemporary audience about the legacy of empire. Empire Marketing Board Posters includes a selection of posters from this unique collection, examining the varied themes of the EMB’s graphics output and questioning its promotion of a sense of imperial pride and the use of stereotypical images of people and places.
Melanie Horton worked in museums and galleries for 10 years and is involved with academic teaching and research.