An exhibition showcasing the work by two of the lettering world’s unsung heroes will go on display from February 8 to March 8 at the Bolton Museum and Art Gallery in Le Mans Crescent.

The ‘Men of Letters’ exhibition will feature the works of Tony Forster and Phill Grimshaw, both who tragically died young.

Tony Forster was the man who designed the logo for rock band 10cc and Paperchase, the international chain of stationery stores. He was a prominent figure in the Manchester design scene between the early 1960s up until his death in 2008, he also taught regularly at Bolton School of the Arts and won more than 25 international design awards during his career.

Phill Grimshaw was a former student of Tony’s at Bolton School of the Arts and went on to become an internationally renowned typeface designer, creating 44 typefaces for ITC and Letraset.

Tony’s son Dan Forster has teamed up with Graphic Design Lecturer, Anthony Roocroft, and the University of Bolton’s School of the Arts to present what is possibly the most extensive exhibition of hand lettering and calligraphy ever displayed in the UK.

Most of their work displayed has remained largely unseen, as it was not produced digitally. This exhibition reveals their sketches, mock-ups, final artworks, original calligraphy pieces, typeface designs and original posters, all produced by hand.

Dan said: “The exhibition has been a long time in the making. Following my dad’s death, I set to clearing out and organising his studio, a process which spanned eight years.

“I knew from day one that something had to be done to share my dad’s incredible work. Now through this exhibition, we hope to highlight this hand-rendered work. I’m sure it will be particularly interesting for a younger generation of digital designers.”


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