Speaker: Mark Ovenden
6 October 2020

This lecture overs surprising attempts to create some graphic unity, even in the 1860s and 70s. Mark discusses the expansion of the London Underground and the need to create some cohesion between the different operating companies, Leslie Green’s architecture. He covers many subjects, including the Arts & Crafts movement, Frank Pick, Edward Johnston’s typeface, Charles Holden’s architecture and the Streamline Moderne/Art Deco movement, the New Works Programme, post war austerity and design, the Victoria Line, the loss of Johnston and its rescue by Kono, the Jubilee Line Extension and its architecture, the creation of TfL, recent schemes and future works including the Elizabeth Line/Northern Line extension to Battersea.

Mark 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.