Protest Signs At #U2eiTOUR

Original Story by Aaron J. Sams (2018-05-04)

  • “Vote” sign with eye
  • “Free” and “Speech” in word bubbles
  • “# Never Again”

During the #U2eiTour kick off in Tulsa, the screen appears early on in the show displaying protest signs on the screen. These signs dance around to different panels on the screen and each image appears multiple times in multiple places during the pre-show.

  • “Freedom Justice Equality” with two faces and two hands
  • “Human Rights” and fist
  • “Herstory” and pink background

It’s not the first time that U2 has been using the idea of protest signs during this album promotional campaign. Back in November, while performing in Trafalgar Square in London, U2 handed out protest signs to the audience in attendance and asked them to hold up the signs as they performed “Get Out of Your Own Way”. That performance was filmed for a video, which has yet to be released. The signs given out in Trafalgar were different than these digital designs that we see.

  • “Refugees Welcome” and boat carrying refugees
  • “Equal Rights” and equals sign
  • “Give Peace A Chance” and dove with barbed wire

In Tulsa we were able to identify 24 separate signs that flashed up on the screen. There may have been more. If you spotted any and want to let us know we would appreciate any additional information about these signs. Will the signs in other cities be the same? We expect that some will be reused throughout the tour, but its this sort of element that U2 often plays with and expands on as the tour progresses.

  • “Resist” in a stop sign
  • “Educate a girl Empower a Community” and a hand raised
  • “None of us are Equal Until All of Us Are Equal” and a variety of heads male and female

The signs in Tulsa included references to empowered women, equal rights, refugees and other current concerns. Also included were a couple that had no writing, and two lyrics, “Get out of your own way” and “Fight back” both make an appearance.

Edel Rodriguez is the artist behind these posters. Edel was born in Havana, Cuba, and has worked on cover art for the likes of TIME magazine and NY Times, amongst others.

  • “20¢ Can Save a Life” and face
  • “Empowered Women Empower Women” and face
  • “Enough” and shattered arm with American flag

The overall colour of most of these signs displayed on the barricage was red and white and black. There was a small handful which were colourful though including a pink Herstory sign, the blue in the Refugees Welcome sign, some yellow in two signs about the empowerment of women. And the sign that reads “Nowhere on Earth do women have as many opportunities as men. Nowhere.” whifh features blue, grey, red, yellow and aqua.

  • “English Math Science Guns” with Guns crossed out
  • Three fists
  • “Don’t Shoot!” and man with arms in air

Some of the signs reference real world organizations such as Herstory, mentioned in one of the pink signs, was a part of The Joshua Tree Tour 2017, as the backing screen during “Ultra Violet (Light My Way)” lit up with the faces of pioneering women in the fields of politics, science, entertainment, and human rights.#NeverAgain references the student-led movement for tighter gun control regulations formed in the aftermath of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shootings. “Poverty is Sexist” is an ongoing campaign by the One organization.

  • “Fight Back” inside a mouth
  • “Get Out of Your Own Way” with a snake
  • “Free Speech” covering mouth

After the signs finish, the screen lights up with a pattern which allows the AR material to work on the phones. But for the early part of the pre-show, these signs are part of the early entertainment and part of the show. As they play on the screens, a mix of songs can be heard over the PA system.

  • “End all Wars” with face, with a mouth on top
  • “Nowhere on Earth do women have as many opportunities as men. Nowhere.” and lips and glasses.
  • “Poverty is Sexist” and face.

The posters were created by Edel Rodriguez, a visual artist who has also produced artwork for TIME magazine, Der Spiegel, the New York Times, and many others.

Many thanks to Allison, Kelly, and others who contributed images to this article. Your assistance is greatly appreciated.

< Next News Entry | Previous News Entry > was formerly known as Follow us on Twitter | Facebook