“Everybody’s trying to rebrand Africa, and it isn’t going so well. Vogue Italia’s latest issue — boosted by great billowing gusts of editorial hot air from both the New York Times and the Guardian — is called “Rebranding Africa”, and as you’d expect the whole thing is an embarrassing and insulting shambles. The images are okay, but otherwise it feels like something a middle-schooler cobbled together for a class project. And then got a “D” for it… ”
When I first saw the rebranding Africa campaign advertised a few months ago, I had to choke down a little bit of vomit. No need for me to add much commentary other than it felt like an ill conceived idea from the beginning.
If I was an excellent illustrator I would have drawn a cartoon depicting Africa as a beast of burden that has already been “branded” beyond recognition. Because when Vogue talks about “re-branding”, I don’t see marketing or visual perceptions. I see a searing hot branding iron with the ideas of others trying to make another mark.