Sunday, June 5, 2011

London Underground's map

Designed by Harry Beck the London Underground Map can be considered a work of art.
It has already been studied by some scholars and Rudolf Arnheim in his "Art and Visual Perception" claims that it's harmony pleases the eyes and it is perfectly designed to convey the informations it needs.
Withdrawing the realistic informations, such as geographic details or streets, it is the best possible image to show what needs to be found quickly.
He says lots of things. Just look. If you are a British citizen try to forget it's utility. Perhaps it will be easier if you look at it upside down.

Harry Beck worked many years to find this last version in 1960.
adapted from Hella Heaven.


Missy said...

Hmmm I never thought of a map as art before... Interesting.


Ana said...

Designers are artists.

cookingvarieties said...

hi ana, the great thing about art is that it has no limit..evrything is art, creation..
an art in art and art in creation itself IS ART.. :)
mind boggling enuf, but no stress... have a nice day

Ana said...

thank you Maznah!

soubriquet said...

I'm english, so I've grown up with that map.
Anybody ever travelling to London can thank Harry Beck, whose map makes travel around the city so very easy. As a sometimes artist, and a keen design observer, I love that map. And of course, all around the world, it's copied. Harry Beck's great insight was that the map need not be an accurate, proportional spacial representation, it didn't need to work as a tradition traveller's map might, with landmarks and images of the real world. What it had to guide was a traveller who wanted to disappear into a hole somewhere in London, and reappear at another. For that it works perfectly.
To see just how good the tube map is, you need to see the geographically correct version Here:

Ana said...

Thank you for the link soubriquet.