Shakespeare: Greatest Living Playwright

Victoria & Albert Museum

This exhibition was held to mark the 450th anniversary of Shakespeare’s birth at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. The logo, drawn by Barnbrook especially for the exhibition, employs the same modular principles as the VirusFonts typeface Bastard. The spirit of Bastard – historical letterforms drawn with a contemporary eye – echoes the concept of this exhibition: viewing the works of Shakespeare as contemporary, relevant and living ideas. In response to this theatrical re-imagining and in an attempt to subvert audience expectations, a monochrome mural was created using a contemporary design language. It details facts and figures about the life, works and performances of Shakespeare and is set in a myriad of VirusFonts, alluding to the literary heritage of the exhibition. The mural follows a logical scale, starting with the smallest element – the breath with which words are spoken – and culminating with planet earth and our position in the cosmos. The mural ran along a numerical scale that illustrates statistics about the life and works of Shakespeare. The exhibition was designed by 59 Productions.