The Engineering Dept. went to the Design Museum in London last night, for the opening of the Designs of the Year exhibition. That’s because we’ve been nominated in the Graphics category, which is nice.
The seemingly unstoppable rise of digital communication has seen many people predict the impending death of print. The Newspaper Club flies in the face of this, by enabling anyone to produce, not just their own newspaper, but anything that can be made with ink on newsprint. To keep costs as low as possible on print runs from five to 5000, The Newspaper Club utilises downtime at printing presses. Files can be uploaded to the website, enabling prompt printing and delivery, and there are even tools to help the enthusiastic amateur arrange text and images in attractive page layouts.
We’ve been given a little space in which to show off Newspaper Club, and we wanted to make something friendly and interesting that people could actually do something with. So we printed lots of single sheet newspapers that people could take away with them.
On one side, a big logo. That’s not very interesting. But on the other side, James Bridle produced a map and an essay for a walk starting at the Design Museum. It’s called A Wide Arm of Sea. The walk takes you east along an imaginary shore line, towards the history of Bermondsey and Rotherhithe. As James writes:
Somewhere along the way I had the realisation that Bermondsey and Rotherhithe form not a riverbank, but a coastline: a starting point for voyages and expeditions, a strand of possibilities. All the world embarked from this point: Conrad’s famous opening lines to Heart of Darkness – “What greatness had not floated on that ebb into the mystery of an unknown earth!” – look out from here; as do the mad expeditions of Brunel and Captain (Saint?) Christopher Jones. And so: we have a walk, a story, a history.
James has written all about it on his blog booktwo.org, so to save me just copying and pasting, go and read it over there. It’s a fine thing indeed.
A Wide Arm of Sea is available at the Design Museum for the next couple of months. If you follow the walk, we’d love to hear your stories and see your photos – stick a link in the comments.
As usual, more photos on Flickr.