The London Fire Brigade unveiled their updated typeface designed by Studio Sutherl & and The Foundry Types at the Running Towards exhibition of graphic artwork inspired by the organization’s design heritage.
The race to took place at Shoreditch Fire Station during the London Design Festival, with visitors entering through the building’s large red shutters into an exhibition of artwork created by British designers.
Its design was inspired by the lettering of old fire trucks and on the front the typeface was printed in the red, yellow and gold colors synonymous with fire trucks.
To celebrate the typeface, London Firefighters collaborated with communications agency KesselsKramer, writer Thomas SharpStudio Sutherl& and rug maker British on the exhibition, which saw designers create their own interpretations of the organization’s design heritage.
Among the exhibits were graphic renditions of the Danger Fire Hazard safety sign, a bespoke rug with a pattern inspired by the universal emergency exit sign, and firefighting objects and items from the company’s own collection. Shoreditch Fire Station.
KesselsKramer described the showcase as “a celebration of the bravery of London’s firefighters, aiming to inspire that same spirit in ourselves”.
The studio invited 25 London-based designers to recreate the fire safety symbol for their display, titled Warning: Fire Hazard.
“It seemed fitting that for the inaugural London Fire Brigade Design Festival exhibition, a graphic design element synonymous with the fire service took center stage,” said KesselsKramer.
Presented on triangular panels, each work was designed to tell a story of firefighter bravery. Graphic artist jimmy turrelThe interpretation of was dedicated to his father who was a firefighter.
Illustrator Francois LangThe entry of depicts the story of her grandmother’s cat, who was rescued from a tree by firefighters.
“It’s such an iconic venue for an art exhibit,” said Lauren Coutts, Artistic Director of KesselsKramer. “Getting a rare glimpse of a fire station is very exciting in itself, so to be able to celebrate bravery here, in so many forms, is very special.”
The Brits have created a bespoke wool rug for The Running Towards exhibition, which features a pattern inspired by the universal fire exit symbol.
The burgundy and navy blue chevrons repeat throughout the length of the rug with arrows and sticks that refer to the emergency exit sign. According to the British, the rug is made from wool to illustrate the material’s naturally flame retardant properties.
“As a material, wool contains a higher water and nitrogen content than other synthetic fibers, making it a naturally flame retardant material,” Britons said.
“Another advantage is that it does not emit smoke or fumes, often one of the main causes of serious health problems following a fire.”
Other exhibits that took place during the London Design Festival include a collection of wooden objects made from a dying ash tree and a sculptural stone installation that references Stonehenge.
Photograph courtesy of London Fire Brigade.
The Running Towards took place from September 20 to 24 as part of the London Design Festival. See Dezeen Events Guide for an up-to-date list of architecture and design events happening around the world.