This poster was created by Ghanaian artist D.A. Jasper (b. 1966) for Poster House’s exhibition Baptized by Beefcake: The Golden Age of Hand-Painted Movie Posters from Ghana. Jasper’s original painted posters are also featured in the exhibition. He is one of the most prolific and important poster painters in Ghana. The distinguishing factor of his art is his straightforward naturalism, which rarely strays from the scene depicted in the films.
Baptized by Beefcake contains information about how movies, economics, and religion mixed in the 1980s and 1990s to inspire show-stopping posters in Ghana. The exhibition presents the work of 22 artists whose posters tell the story of how Western movies not only became symbols of modernity, but also vehicles for religious experience. Each artist’s signature style reflects Ghana’s rich tradition of painting, as well as the influence of Western commercial graphics portrayed on VHS and PAL box covers. The eye-catching, sometimes shocking graphics reference a hybrid of indigenous and Pentecostal symbology, in which Rambo and the Terminator become messengers of moral ideologies in a larger-than-life mash-up of pop culture and religion.