Jamie Reid, Poster Designer – by ciAnnait

Posted: March 27, 2012 by kinnit in Uncategorized

On leaving the suburban London ‘Croydon Art College’ in 1970, Jamie Reid co-founded the suburban press where he developed his unique style of cut up graphics and sloganeering. The Croydon based magazine fused local politics with agit-prop graphics and situatoionalist slogans. 

 He is, however, undoubtedly most famous for his iconic posters for The Sex Pistols from 1976-1980. These images  were described as ‘situationist’ because they took a radical political stance and deconstructed the images of the current political situation to create new meanings. http://www.cddc.vt.edu/sionline/si/newforms.html

Reid’s work demonstrates the power of graphic design in the music industry and opened the door to a new generation of British designers. They used the creative freedom of the music industry as a showcase for vibrant design, unaffected by corporate compromise. Their influence has spread beyond music to fashion, the media and consumer packaging.

He says of his later works which depict the ‘eightfold year’, incorporating the festivals of the druidic calendar,

 “ All that I have been doing is  re-adapting my work from the late-6o’s and early 70’s into different contexts and continuing with the same themes and messages” As you can see!


What makes Reids artwork distinctive is his use of cut-up type face, and poor quality almost photocopy like images. This strategy suggest  that the work has been done without much care for mere aesthetics,   and neatness and without the help of high-tech machinery. It effectively conveys the message that what is being communicated is from the people, by the people (who may not have access to many resources, or hold high brow sensibilities).

Indeed his political messages reflect a great respect for the concerns,sensibilities and rights of the ‘common people’.

Ye of the Plough, Ye of the Bower,
Ye of the Mill and Ye of the Tower,
Ye of the Way and Ye of the Tree,
Ye of the Stars and Ye of the Sea,
Rise Up to the Cry of the Commoners Storie,
Our Ragged Kingdom -a Kingdom of Glory!

Anon (Trad) http://www.jamiereid.org/

He has continued to create artwork for music and film, being fascinated with the effect that music has on images. Afro-Celt Sound System


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