Alan Kitching: “Letterpress is no longer relevant”

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As part of our Design Week at 30 series we speak to letterpress legend Alan Kitching about his career in design, and how the industry has changed over the past three decades.

During the 1950s, a teenage Alan Kitching started out doing a typesetting apprenticeship at a printing company in his hometown of Darlington, before beginning to experiment with letterpress printing, producing commissions for the likes of The Guardian and The National Theatre and going on to teach at the Royal College of Art (RCA).

We spoke to Kitching about how the design industry has developed and evolved since he first started his career. The film shows the designer at his workshop in Kennington, south London, which is home to one of the largest collections of wood type in the world.

Alan Kitching: A Life in Letterpress is a monograph by John L. Walters, which presents the work of the typographer, designer and letterpress practitioner from over the past 50 years. The book is available in stores from 3 April 2017.

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