160 years of the london underground

Design and architecture

6 September 2023

Digby hall , hound street, sherborne at 3 pm and 7 pm

Queensbury Station

Green Park-Pedestrian Tunnel

Boston Manor Station-Illuminated Sign

The talk attempts to create some graphic unity (even in the 1860s and 70s), expansion of the Underground and the need to create some cohesion between the different operating companies. The lecture covers architecture, the Arts and Crafts movement, Edward Johnston’s typeface and the Streamline Modern/Art Deco movement etc up to the present.

Mark Ovenden

Mark Ovenden is a broadcaster and author who specialises in the subjects of graphic
design, cartography and architecture in public transport, with an emphasis on underground rapid transit.
His first book Metro Maps of the World published in 2003 is a guide to the diagrams, plans and maps of underground rapid transit system including images ranging from photos of the systems to rare and historical maps. Paris Metro Style in map and station design was published November 2008. Railway Maps of the World was published in May 2011 in the USA, a British edition was produced in September 2011. London Underground by Design was published by Penguin Books in January 2013. A celebration of the Johnston typeface centenary and 90th Anniversary of Gill Sans was published in 2016, and in July 2017 Mark fronted a television documentary for BBC Four on the subject of Johnston and Gill and in November 2018 he presented a documentary for BBC Radio 4 on skyscrapers. Others works on graphic design and transport systems are in preparation.