Back when this corrugated sheet metal was manufactured, it would have been difficult to trace the trademark down unless you were somehow involved in the supply chain. A few questions asked of the right source would have revealed the truth, but curiosity and connections would be necessary. These days, it was still mildly difficult for some to ascertain that Redcliffe was originally manufactured during the late eighteen hundreds in Bristol, England. They found this out because the trademark, though partially obscured over time, was still doing its job.
I’m not sure what the structure was used for originally, but the dilapidated remains now sit beside Jones Creek waiting for taggers and other artists to take notice. From the road, it would be easy to miss. Trees and underbrush have left a small portal through which a curious seeker finds a trail leading to the crumbling remains of someone’s hard work. Gone, but not forgotten.
The trademark, now highlighted by taggers, connected me to this small piece of history. In the main photo for this post, I decided to flip the image and honor the maker’s mark by keeping it upright and easily legible; decay, desecration, and general disinterest should not detract from its purpose.
When I was running this photo through my post processing workflow, it struck me that I also bear a maker’s mark. A mark that sets me apart—that sets humanity apart—from all other life. There is a seal on humanity, and, just like the Redcliffe trademark differentiates this corrugated metal from any other, this seal sets us apart. The beauty of the mark is its indelibility. Time and taggers may have had their way with the building but the trademark is still there. Many efforts have been made to disguise, disavow, or simply disregard the maker’s mark on us, but even after all this time there it is.