The idea that letter writing is a dying art may not seem to be the most original premise for an exhibition, but Craig Oldham’s new show at the KK Outlet in London’s Hoxton Square brings new wit and vigour to the idea.
Craig wrote to a range of designers and others working in the creative industries asking them to hand write a reply on their professional stationery.
The results are fascinating, but not necessarily in the way you might expect. There’s a lot of apologising for the legibility of the handwriting – a nice twist on making them use their office letterheads which in many cases have obviously been very specifically designed – there’s nothing you can really do to your own handwriting. There’s also a huge diversity of approaches, from quite serious meditations on the nature of human communication, to doodles, silly anecdotes and the odd subversive blank sheet.
The stand-out piece is provided by Craig’s mum, who has submitted not only her own letter but a copy of a note he sent her as a young boy, the childish red crayon and completely pure sentiments combining powerfully.
And with letters from the likes of Milton Glaser, Adrian Shaughnessy and Wim Crouwel also on display, it’s well worth a visit.
The show is on until August 27.