White Man™ Identity Standards Manual
Assuming the form of corporate brand guidelines, the White Man™ Identity Standards Manual offers a satirical exploration of the relationship between white and male identity and power.
An unflinching, witty and ultimately hopeful little book, written and designed by Oli Bentley as a follow-up to his award-winning These Northern Types.
“White Man is a beautifully sharp and witty piece of work that, like all the best pieces of art that makes you laugh, also makes you think. It’s particularly hopeful, helpful and powerful because of who it comes from – if a white man can see the iniquities in our world that White Man lays bare, then perhaps change might actually, eventually, arrive.”
— Nick Ahad (BBC Radio 4’s Front Row / BBC Radio Leeds / The Yorkshire Post)
Dripping with corporate bullshit and beautiful utilitarian graphics, White Man™ offers a snappy but thought-provoking exploration of just how deep the links between power and identity can run.
“A fresh and original take on global power structures, delivered with great design, wit and charm. What better way to spotlight a huge issue than through the lens of typically ridiculous corporate guidelines.”
— Katy Cowan, Founding Editor of Creative Boom
“Beautifully minimalist and witty… I would highly recommend it to White MenTM and “Challenger Identities” alike, as there is much to unpack for all of us.”
— Katie McIlroy, The State of the Arts
“An incredibly well articulated point, made in a clever and tragically funny way. The more it unfolds, the more truth is uncovered.”
— Mat Lazenby, Lazenby Brown
“We all love a good set of brand guidelines. But a corporate brand manual is often designed to do two things: first ensure conformity, and then, through this homogeneity, ensure that a brand’s identity and heritage are leveraged to gain — or maintain — as much market share as possible.
“It seemed a good starting point to explore the depths of connections between identity and power for a design/media-savvy audience – and to explore my own identity and privilege. The format presents whiteness and maleness to be actively considered as identities — not the invisible ‘default’ against which so many are currently othered. I also hope that it picks away at the all-too-convenient little myths used as stand-ins for the nuanced nature of true identity; that we might all live a bit more honestly and equally outside such 2D, black and white constraints.” — Oli Bentley