New exhibition in Bow examines history of printing industry in 20th century

A photo of Malvern Press in Dalston Lane during the 1970s, from the Lightboxes + Lettering exhibitio

A photo of Malvern Press in Dalston Lane during the 1970s, from the Lightboxes + Lettering exhibition by Rendezvous Projects. Picture courtesy of Bow Arts. - Credit: Archant

A new exhibition opening in Bow explores the significant history of the printing industry in east London.

Lightboxes + Lettering, an exhibition by Rendezvous Projects with support from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, tells the story of the industry over the 20th century, focussing on the boroughs of Tower Hamlets, Hackney and Waltham Forest.

It presents a wealth of material from historic examples of print to objects, photographs of iconic businesses and workers' memories.

The exhibition examines changes in the print industry, exploring the role east London played and the influences of new and digital technologies.

Project leader Lucy Harrison said: "The technology of print, design aspects and the finished products all provide a fascinating insight into the evolution of the print industry in the area, from closed-shop union print-works to radical presses and commercial, artists' or community print shops."


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Rendezvous Projects worked with a team of volunteers to collect the show's material, producing responses to the project's findings.

The show will run at Bow Arts' Nunnery Gallery, opposite Bow Church, from January 17 to March 29, 2020.

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