160-Meter Long Poem Forms A Bridge Between Two Museums [Pics]

160-Meter Long Poem Forms A Bridge Between Two Museums [Pics]
Arts & Culture

Typographic path will make use of the first ever slab serif typeface.

Ross Brooks
  • 27 august 2013

As part of plans to turn a large area surrounding Kew Bridge Steam Museum in West London, Future City has commissioned a range of works from various artists, curators and cultural partners.

Designer Harry Pearce of Pentagram came up with the concept to create a physical link between the Steam Museum and the nearby Musical Museum, home to a collection of self-playing musical instruments.

The first stage of a 160 metre-long typographic installation is the text of a specially commissioned poem, “The Self-Playing Instrument of Water,” written by TS Eliot Prize-winning poet Alice Oswald. The path it will be set on is the site of old filtration beds that were once used by the Grand Junction Waterworks Company.


Oswald’s series of ten couplets will be set in what is believed to be the first ever slab serif typeface, Double Pica Antique – designed around the same time as the pumping station at Kew Bridge was built.

Click through to see more images of the giant poem.

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