Detail of one of several Jonathan Barnbrook-designed posters put up illegally around London in 2003, the night prior to U.S. President George W. Bush's arrival.

When Graphic Design Fights the Power

Jonathan Barnbrook, Gun Portrait.

Barnbrook poster put up in London before George Bush's arrival.

Barnbrook poster put up in London before George Bush's arrival.


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Jonathan Barnbrook – Friendly Fire
June 19-October 10, 2007

Jonathan Barnbrook has emerged in the past two decades as one of the UK’s most consistently innovative graphic designers. Pioneering graphic design with a social conscience, Barnbrook makes powerful statements about corporate culture, consumerism, war and international politics. Through his work in both commercial and non-commercial spheres he combines wit, political savvy and bitter irony in equal measures.

Friendly Fire traces Barnbrook's career from early experiments in pure typography and pioneering motion graphics in the early 1990s, to recent work, including his latest projects with collaborators such as the anti-corporate collective Adbusters. Drawn from the designer’s own archive, the work represented will span the wide range of disciplines in which the Barnbrook studio work, including one of their most pioneering areas — typeface design.

Since 1990, Barnbrook Design has produced a wide range of innovative graphic work, under the direction of Central St Martins graduate, Jonathan Barnbrook. The studio is notable for its belief in the ability of graphic design to facilitate social change. From print design to corporate identity, magazine work to typeface, industrial design to CD covers, Barnbrook’s output is prolific and always deeply thought-provoking.

As well as collaborations with Damien Hirst and David Bowie, Barnbrook is a regular contributor to the Canadian anti-corporate magazine, Adbusters, and has shown self-initiated, often daring, political exhibitions in Tokyo and Seoul.

Jonathan Barnbrook, Heathen, 2002, David Bowie CD cover.

Jonathan Barnbrook

Detail of Barnbrook poster put up in London before George Bush's arrival.