‘Europhobia’ is Ian's comment on the xenophobic ‘Little England’ mentality currently fermenting in certain sectors of British society. This tendency is personified in the figure of John Bull and his
old bitch Maggie.
John Bull was created as a recruiting poster in the First World War and was re-created as Uncle Sam in the United States. John Bull became a symbol of British imperial power and aggression, as in the
IRA song ‘Patriot Game’ – “…six counties lie under John Bull’s tyranny”. The image persisted for many years, well into the 1960’s,
but has faded along with
John Bull is shown here looking rather like his bulldog, standing astride a square world showing the British Empire at its height. He would never have let ‘The Empire’ go, and would rather die than give up sterling, yards, feet & inches, warm beer and over-cooked food.
Maggie, his dog, is clutching a tattered European flag, its gold
stars peeling off to reveal the tricolour of Germany.
His cane handle is the head of an African, still failing to appreciate the civilizing influence of John Bull’s grasping fingers.
54 inches / 140 cm high
Limewood, walnut, boxwood, yew, dyed maple, veneer, acrylics, pearl and amber