Hannah Furnell


Graphic Designer, Manchester www.hannahfurnell.co.uk

Alan Fletcher Exhibition Review

We recently had a talk from Emily King about the exhibition 'Alan Fletcher: Fifty Years of Work (and Play)'  which is currently displayed at Cube Art Gallery, Manchester; therefore I thought it would be a good idea to visit the exhibition. The exhibition is defenately worth a visit, it's no wonder he was described as ‘one of the giants of 20th Century design’ by the Guardian. The exhibition displays sketches, posters, work from his student days, experimental work and also publications from his 'Fletcher/Forbes/Gil' days. On entry to the exhibition, you are greeted by large amounts of interesting objects and pieces of typography on the walls which were found in Fletcher's studio after his death. The gallery was set out on black and white walls, accompanied with glass cabinets held up by scaffolding, which encased most of his print work. There were also black and white photographs of Fletcher revealing the history of his days with Forbes/ Gil. As you walk through the gallery you can see the changes in Fletcher's work through his lifetime of Graphic Design; beginning with his school days, his days working with other designers and then his unique designs, which also included a few 3D artworks.

The part I liked most about the exhibition was something taken from his studio; a desk which held 26 packages - inside of which were each letter of the alphabet, each one filled with hundreds of different cut outs in which he had found. These were then used in his designs; which you can see in his later works. Although Fletcher did a range of design work, the aspect of his work I found most interesting was his use of typeface and colour. Here are a few photos I took whilst at the exhibition: