London

British Empire Exhibition 1924, Wembley Park, April-October

Colour printed lithograph printed by Dobson, Molle and Co Ltd, Colour Printers, Edinburgh, Liverpool and London.

Image size: 19 1/4" x 28 3/4"

External dimensions of frame: 22" x 31 3/4"

Condition: Generally good condition throughout, commensurate with the age and ephemeral nature of this piece. Original folds as issued, some light age spotting here and there. 

Designed by Stanley Kennedy North (1887-1942) in 1923, this owes something to the curious pictorial maps by Macdonald Gill in the early twenties. North includes amusing touches such as Britannia manipulating a pair dividers to measure out the scale of the exhibition in feet and inches, on a scale of 350 feet to the inch. Particularly charming are the various vehicles including cars, "trams, buses, taxicabs, what-you-will" either en route, with a policeman on point duty, or ensconsed in the "Motor Park".  Particularly visually striking is the blue and white striped section, over which flies a flag proclaiming; "The unrivalled and entrancing MYSTERIES & the miles of smiles in the AMUSEMENT PARK wil be disclosed when this fine sutsheet is removed on opening day." Watch this space...

There is also a somewhat sinister goodwill message from the Prince of Wales (subsequently the exceedingly brief King Edward VIII) who states: "We must unite to make the British Empire Exhibition a success worth of our race - I shall hope to see many friends from the Dominions and Colonies at Wembley in 1924."  Considering the numerous nations that constituted the Empire, here proclaimed on the banners around the title (New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, Newfoundland, Canada, India, Malta, Burmah, British Guiana, Fiji, Palestine, Cyprus, Hong Kong, East Africa, West Africa, West Indies, Malaya, Bermuda, Ceylon), the Prince failed to elaborate on which race that may be...

An attractive and decorative period piece.

 

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