London based studio, Spin, is the focus of Magma’s new exhibition, which launched last night. in the basement of their lovely new flagship store near Covent Garden. This celebration of 20 years of design exhibits limited edition prints that bring the printed page to life. Work moves between books produced by Unit Editions (founded by Adrian Shaughnessy and Spin’s Tony Brook), to client work and original pieces.
In some ways it’s worth checking out the exhibition for Magma’s shop alone. The shop was founded in 2000 and has evolved into a multi-faceted retailer, and a brand in itself, with design at the forefront of their stock. Whether its Swedish designed children’s toys, a multitude of magazines or art materials you’re after, Magma will probably have it. The products on offer are as multi-disciplinary as Spin’s own design work, perhaps making them a natural fit for the exhibit.
Keeping the shop in mind, as you head downstairs, you might end up navigating the work on the wall around piles of magazines on the floor. But no fear - although this does look like an impulse-buyers nightmare, it also gives the viewer a chance to compare magazine titles with Spin’s own classic take on design. From vertical lines to neon pops of colour, it is easy to see how the deep-rooted design history Spin absorbs is filtered into other work.
Spin is all about simple lines, and intelligent creative responses. The exhibition coincides with the launch of Spin: 360°, a monograph by Unit Editions that documents the studio’s work in identity building, print, moving image, digital and environmental graphics that have come to define their decade spanning work. There’s even a look at the studio's own self-directed work in curating and collecting. It’s a beast of a book, coming in at 520 pages.
The monograph is a beautifully printed, in-depth exploration of one of London’s most important design studios. As such, it touches on the historic and iconic moments of the company’s time. Having worked on record sleeve design for almost ten years, in the mid 2000s, Spin began taking on bigger client branding. It was in these years they developed their neo-Modernist lines and typographic sensibilities that have come to define their work. So if you're in the neighbourhood, go check out this era defining work (and for the affordable art-lovers of you out there, most of the limited edition prints start from £35).
Exhibition: 29th July – 4th September
Location: Magma, 29 Shorts Gardens, London, WC2H 9AP