Typography treasure trove St Bride enlists designers’ help in securing its future

Lucienne Roberts, Matt Willey, David Pearson and more have created We Are Type artworks to mark the institution’s 125th anniversary, supporting a crowdfunding campaign to raise funds to continue its work in printing, type, graphic and book design.

24 November 2020

St Bride Foundation in London was founded in 1891 and, to this day, remains a treasure trove of graphic design, printing, typography and book design history – “we exist to tell the story of print” summarises its librarian Sophie Hawkey-Edwards. Yet it receives no core government funding; 90 per cent of its income comes from venue hire – which needless to say has fallen off a cliff in the past year – with the rest generated through fundraising. So to mark its 125th anniversary and raise much-needed cash to continue its influential work, it has launched a crowdfunding campaign and invited graphic designers far and wide to spread the word.

Lucienne Roberts, Matt Willey and David Pearson are just some of the designers who’ve joined the campaign, making artworks with the phrase “We Are Type” to celebrate St Bride’s birthday and sharing it with their following to direct potential supporters to the campaign site. You can help by purchasing items, ranging from pin badges and letterpress posters to vouchers for a printing workshop.

As part of its anniversary, and with funding support, St Bride is planning to take many of its collections online – a huge undertaking that will no doubt become a source of inspiration for those who can’t visit the library in person. Its print, design and typographic collections are used across the industry as a vital source for research, ideas and design heritage. It’s also long been a destination for exhibitions, talks and workshops, providing ongoing education and skills development in the creative community.

With that in mind, the funds raised will also go towards providing educational opportunities for young people in St Bride’s library, archive and print workshop, plus developing new print and design workshops to encourage the next generation of creative practitioners. It also plans to curate and film a new series of physical and online talks by typographers, designers and print historians, and stage online and physical exhibitions too.

You can read more about St Bride and support its fundraising campaign, here.

GallerySt Bride Foundation campaign: We Are Type


Copyright © David Pearson, 2020


Copyright © Lucienne Roberts, 2020


Copyright © Matthew Young, 2020

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Matt Willey for St Bride Foundation (Copyright © Matt Willey, 2020)

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Jenny Brewer

Jenny oversees our editorial output across work, news and features. She was previously It’s Nice That's news editor. Get in touch with any big creative stories, tips, pitches, news and opinions, or questions about all things editorial.

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