Roger That!

First held in August 2010 at Rocket gallery in Tokyo, then updated for another outing at London’s Kemistry Gallery, “Roger That” brought together ESW/P, Julia and Inventory. The exhibition aimed to find common ground in the potential language difficulties between English and Japanese. Our concept was to interpret the letter forms and associated sound words of the international aviation alphabet. The show explores and illustrates the lateral and at times surreal phonetic codes of the alphabet from Alpha to Zulu. Consisting of 26 A2 litho printed posters, four from each designer, the show is a complete typographic journey through the alphabet. The prints were produced in two special colours and hand numbered in an edition of one hundred. To adorn the walls of the gallery space we commissioned a writer to produce a short story (below) that used all of the words from the aviation alphabet. Where these words appeared we replaced them with the corresponding poster.

‘NOVEMBER 1st was the day it all became apparent. ALPHA goose – CHARLIE — had decided some weeks back that the flock should migrate. QUEBEC was simply too cold. MIKE longed to visit INDIA but it was impossibly far and he struggled with the language. He picked up ZULU in a flash. Hindi? Not so much. For JULIETTE, La SIERRA was calling. She always had an inkling that her roots were Peruvian and was desperate to explore LIMA. All that history! VICTOR, the PAPA goose of the flock, dreaded the thought of flying. His wings were tired. This ageing ROMEO would be much happier traveling on a DELTA flight with all those pretty young things in their tight UNIFORM. He liked the idea of walking through the X-RAY machine at the airport before kicking back in first class with a WHISKEY. He’d watch the GOLF on his way to some southern YANKEE town, where he would check-in to a fancy HOTEL. The migration was challenging but moral kept them high. They would TANGO in the sky, sometimes FOXTROT, and you could feel their dreams of sunny climates ECHO all around them. But something wasn’t quite right. The air didn’t feel warmer and the real pointer was the approaching iceberg. “Oh BRAVO!” said OSCAR with KILOs of mock sincerity. “We’ve flown north!”

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