The First of May is a public holiday celebrated across the globe in conjunction with the United States’ Law Day and various nations celebrating International Workers’ Day. In the United States we have a Labor Day that falls at the end of the summer. All others celebrating International Workers’ Day may also call it May Day. A day that no artist can pass up. Interpretive dance, musical events, and culinary artists around the globe prepare for today’s festivities. And last, but not least, who can forget the poster designers. I’ve gathered five illustrated poster designs from across the globe that reflects themes of workers’ rights, power in education and community spirit. Now let’s get inspired with these posters, pitch a maypole and start dancing and singing. Who’s bringing the cake?
The Public Studio
The Public is an activist design studio specializing in changing the world based in Toronto, Ontario. Just like their clients, The Public cares about anti-oppression, sustainability, and social growth. They are activists who seek to change things for the better. They believe that an important message conveyed with inspiration can do just that. They produce work that is creatively, emotionally, and intellectually uplifting.
Free University of NYC
The Free University of New York City is an experiment in radical education and an attempt to transform education into the way it ought to be. Their project is born out of a recognition that the current system of higher education is as unequal as it is unsustainable. With increasing tuition at public and private institutions, the increasing use of precarious adjunct labor, and the larger and larger amounts of debt that students are expected to take on, a university education is systematically becoming a rarefied commodity only available to the few. It is in this context that the Free University operates as a radical and critical pedagogical space.
The Whittier Alliance was formed by a small coalition of Whittier residents, businesses, agencies and religious institutions in January 1977. It is a non-profit 501(c)3 neighborhood organization serving the residents and businesses of Whittier. The Whittier Alliance is a neighborhood resource. The Alliance responds to business and resident inquiries and facilitates meetings to inform the neighborhood about changes, developments, safety issues, neighborhood funds for property improvements, events, etc. that impact the livability and prosperity of the Whittier neighborhood.
Unions in Western Australia, and peak bodies representing over 30 affiliated unions which have over 150,000 members in Western Australia. UnionsWA does not just speak on workplace issues. We also liaise with indigenous and ethnic communities, social justice and environmental groups. Because issues facing working people across the globe are common we work with trade unionists from other countries.
Oxford City Council
The city council of Oxford has orchestrated May Day events throughout the city and promoted it with this modern, illustrated poster. Oxford is well known as a university town and is one of Britain’s fastest growing cities in terms of population, and is one of the most ethnically diverse cities in the UK.