Poster of the Week #19

London at its Brightest, by unknown artist, 1934

We’re enjoying the buzz in London as we approach the start of the Olympics, so as we relaunch our Poster of the week feature we are celebrating London and sport in the city. In 1934 an unknown artist produced a set of four posters entitled London at its Brightest for display on the Underground to highlight the variety of leisure activities that London has to offer. This sporting themed poster was one of many produced at this time due to the growing popularity of a wide range of mass spectator sports. Without television, the only way to see your favourite team or athlete was to watch them live and often the best way to get there was by Underground so this provided a great opportunity to promote off peak travel. Similarly to today, football in particular attracted many fans to town, over seven million every season came to watch the game at London clubs. The Underground didn’t just cater for professional sporting events, it also helped to transport amateur sportsmen and women to many sports grounds, 18,000 acres of sports grounds to be exact! The Underground even issued special discounted tickets to sports clubs.

So as millions of us hop on the Tube over the next six weeks to get involved with the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, we want to know…which sport do you most enjoy watching?

The original London at its Brightest poster is just one of twenty that you can see in our current Poster Parade here at the Museum.

 

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Art and poster tour guides visit Central St Martins

On the 4th July volunteers and staff from London Transport Museum went along to Central St Martins’ new building at Granary square (behind Kings Cross station) to see their printing facilities and learn about the process of making a poster, from art work to the finished print.

Our volunteers offer tours to the public of the art and poster collection at the Museum Depot on a regular basis, and to enhance their knowledge on the collection we decided to arrange this visit to give them an insight into the design and printing process.

Everyone was welcomed and given an insightful tour of the building by staff which included the new galleries and printing facilities (ranging from Macbooks to letter pressing machines).  Having the opportunity to view a collection of German posters was a big highlight and a chance to see how poster design in Germany influenced the development and graphic styles of London Transport advertising campaigns in the early 20th Century.  We also each had the opportunity to have a go at using a letter press machine to create a text print commemorating the visit.  It was a great experience and really showed how much manual work is involved in the process!

If you are interested in a tour of London Transport Museum Depot’s art and poster collection, contact Sam Clift at sam.clift@ltmuseum.co.uk

Exhibition Private View

On 17 May 2012 London Transport Museum ran a private viewing of the Mind the Map exhibition. We heard speeches from Sam Mullins (the director of the museum), Simon Patterson (creator of art works Great Bear and Saptarishi) and a spoken word piece performed by Kway, Elvis, Gloria and Izara (the museum’s Young Consultants). We got the chance to speak to people from the Geffrye museum and the Arts Council about the work we have been doing. We were also given the chance to talk to press about the exhibition and generally all the work the Young Consultants have been doing from 2009 onwards. This exhibition is currently running until 28 October 2012.

Waiting to go on stage was really nerve racking. We waited anxiously for Sam Mullins to finish introducing us, for us to then take our positions.  When preforming our pieces the feeling was indescribable, the pride filled us as the hundreds of people clapped when we finished our piece. It was most definitely an amazing opportunity, to get on stage and have our voices heard by hundreds of people.

“The involvement of ‘young consultants’, a group of teenagers whom the museum involved through all stages of the exhibition’s planning, is the icing on the cake.”Londonist

Accessioning Tickets

At the Museum Depot in Acton Dilwyn Rees and David Clark regularly accession ephemera into the Museum’s collection.  Their main focus is on tickets – from bus, rail and tram to trolleybus tickets, spanning the decades as far back as the early 1900’s.  Recently we caught up with them to find out what they were working on:

“Just thought our readers would like to know that we have recently selected in route number order, Gibson long and short tickets for Central bus including Trolleybus and Country bus that Graham Page (volunteer sadly passed away in 2010) had put away for safe keeping.  Where there is more than one route number we select the best copy, finishing up with two bundles – one for accessioning which includes checking for size and then mounting in plastic sleeves, and duplicates which are for disposal to the LTM Friends stall.  We did find an example which was issued from a special batch of Gibson held at Epping Garage which had provision of the issue of return tickets and inclusion of date.  We are still in the process of selecting Bell Punch tickets between 1949-1951, which is on-going at present.”

David Clark (volunteer)

Young Consultants take over Poster Parade

We were given the opportunity to help create and present the Poster Parade as part of the Mind the Map exhibition, with the support of curators Michelle Brown and Anna Renton. The Poster Parade works alongside the exhibition to give visitors a further insight into the museum’s collection. We chose to use the Poster Parade to challenge the conventional ideas of ‘What is a map?’

We began to create our first Poster Parade in May 2012. We were given a selection of 150 posters and through a lot of discussion and voting, we picked our final top 20 posters! The posters reflect the diversity of ideas and perspectives on mapping journeys. They all pushed boundaries in conveying the meaning of a map. The themes we chose to devise the Poster Parade were; colour, progression of transport, journeys into the countryside and the skills of design.

After making our selection we went to the London Transport Depot in Acton and pulled out the actual posters. We also took part in the process of putting the posters up onto display which was really nice seeing the outcome of all our hard work. This was on display between May and July 2012.

What is a Map?

We currently have a new Poster Parade on display is based on the ‘Olympics’. We helped pull out the posters from the Acton Depot which is always a fun process. The ‘Olympics’ Poster Parade can be found on the second floor at the museum; come down and have a look!

We recently selected posters for the ‘North, East, South, and West’ Poster Parade. As it was our second time, going through the process was a lot quicker as we knew what we were looking for. This poster parade looks at all different areas within London; combing old and new designs.

This Poster Parade will be on display from 14 September 2012 Keep a look out!

We would like to thank Michelle and Anna for being so helpful whilst teaching us the procedures and also for the opportunity to take part. It was an amazing experience and we look forward to our forthcoming work for the Poster 150 exhibition.

Haiku Workshop for Museums at Night

Through positive feedback from our previous two spoken word events, we took the opportunity to create another workshop for the Museums at Night event on Friday 18 May 2012. This also happened to be the public opening of the exhibition Mind the Map: inspiring art, design and cartography, making it even more exciting.

We worked alongside Dean Atta and Laila Sumpton (professional Spoken Word artists who facilitated our previous workshops) to prepare the activities. We then had the help of two Young Volunteers Ayomide Leshi and Daniel Otubela, from the Journeys Youth Programme, to deliver the workshop.

We decided to run a haiku workshop as it’s a simple and fun way of writing a poem. A haiku is a three lined poem with five syllables in the first and third lines, and seven syllables in the second line.

Here are some examples from the evening:

Everyone thinks queen
I know it’s really for me
Me, Victoria

Victoria Pipe, Victoria

People excited
Tickets, athletes, gold medals
Stratford twenty twelve

Jess, Stratford

Like our Emotional Map, we wanted to invite the public to share the emotions that they associated with different areas on the London Tube map and take it to another level by expressing it through poetry.

Being given the Design Gallery to work in, we thought about the resources we needed and how they would work in the space. We decided to display a Tube map on a large canvas. Visually, this linked directly to our Emotional Map within the Mind the Map exhibition. We then chose luggage tags for people to write on and pins to fix tags to the station on the canvas map.

We read out some haikus that we had found interesting and ended the workshop with a performance of poetry we had created with the Young Volunteers. Amazingly over 130 people participated. We were all really happy with the excellent feedback given and comments were also posted through LTM Twitter.

We really enjoyed the evening and thank you to all who took part!

‘What is a Map’ – poster parade

The Museum’s current poster parade display was curated and installed by our amazing Young Consultants, with input from young people in both the UK and Spain.

The display coincides with the Museum’s ‘Mind the Map: inspiring art, design and cartography’ exhibition. ‘Mind the Map’ features an incredible variety of maps, from those that help you get from A to B through to decorative maps, maps as publicity along with some amazing contemporary artworks that explore notions of ‘personal mapping’ and ‘journeys’. The poster display invites you to consider what a map is and can be and explores the many creative approaches to mapping London, its transport system and passengers’ journeys.

This display features labels written by members of the public. We asked young people to give their personal response to the posters on display. Along with involvement from young people in London, we were also lucky enough to work with the wonderful students from the Colegio Cardenal Spinola school in Spain, whose teacher Antonio Cortés has been using the Museum’s collection as a tool to spark discussion during his English language classes.

Each label features a response that reflects a personal journey or experience, bringing very new and insightful perspectives to the Museum’s collection.

Here’s a sample from people’s amazing contributions:

‘This poster reminds me of those nights where the sky is black and the stars light up and you are with someone you love and tell him to count the stars and you love him as much as there are stars in the sky.’
– Eva López, age 15, Cardenal Spínola School, near Seville, Spain

‘This poster reminds me of my journey and paths I have taken toward a life in performance. The bright lights of the signs welcome you into this surreal world that you never want to leave!’
– Gloria Gaspard, age 20, student and LTM Young Consultant, Highams Park, London

A big thank you to everyone who took part!

Emotional Map of London

Izara, Kway and Elvis
Izara, Kway and Elvis with Emotional Map
Izara, Kway and Elvis
Output screen

From the very first focus group of young people held back in February 2010, we have been working towards giving young people a voice in the museum. As well as reflecting their interests, we also wanted to create something all visitors would enjoy. From this we decided to develop a unique interactive display for the current Mind the Map exhibition.
We were inspired by the Macdonald Gill decorative maps. It was interesting to see how much information he could display using only pictures and icons. Our desire was to create a piece of work that invited people to engage with the London Tube map and associate their personal emotions with the different areas on it. We chose this approach because everyone has emotions so everyone can contribute.
After months and months of hard work and analysing with Curator Michelle Brown, Digital Media Developer Charles Dodgson and Designer Ben James we made it to our final design. It is a beautiful modern combination of the famous Henry Beck Tube map and the carefully selected icons. The icons encompass not only the colour but also the movement of the emotion they represent.
We hope that it will appeal to everyone as a way of collecting and documenting people’s journeys around the city of London. Come along and add your own journey now to the Emotional Map. Mind the Map: inspiring art, design and cartography is open until 28 October 2012.