Spin City

A sneak preview of some juicy work going on display at Made North in Sheffield – Spin 360º is a chance to see some classic posters by twentieth century graphic masters alongside work by one of today's best studios.

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Tony Brook and the Spin team installing posters from Brook's impressive personal collection

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Tony Brook and the Spin team installing posters from Brook's impressive personal collection

The question of how to exhibit graphic design in a gallery setting is always problematic – how to show work, the process, intent and outcome of something made for use, handling and function, in the aesthetic vacuum and ‘do-not-touch’ atmosphere of the white cube?

London design consultancy Spin addresses the issue head-on with a complete take-over of Made North Gallery in Sheffield this month, with Spin: 360º, a living manifestation of its recent self-published monograph. The culture of the studio that makes the work will be as much on show as the work itself, as will the material that informs the studio’s ethos and aesthetics.

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Examples of Spin logo design work, including AGI Open, Sim Smith, Okko, Simon Pengelly and Matthew Hilton

For two days (7 and 8 October) the entire Spin studio will relocate to the gallery in Sheffield to launch the display of work, which includes commercial output, self-initiated projects, the back-catalogue of Unit Editions titles (Spin chief Tony Brook’s publishing venture) and – a real treat – pieces from Brook’s personal collection of graphic design ephemera. It’s a chance to see posters by European graphic design masters of the twentieth century such as Wim Crouwel and Karl Gerstner. 

Most graphic design studios are buzzing, industrious hives of carefully controlled chaos – this show admirably seeks to replicate that atmosphere in a gallery (in a nod to the daily intimacies of studio culture, the launch event will be fuelled by Spin-concocted pizza and a specially brewed beer ‘Spin Dark Pale’ by Thornbridge). Further, it is an opportunity to see the fascinating relationship between the work of one of the UK’s most admired and influential graphic design studios alongside the classics that have inspired it. 

See more of Spin's work here.

Spin 360 is on display
7 October – 19 December 2015
at Made North Gallery
Sheffield S1 2BS