The museum will hold the biggest collection of Robinson’s work in the world, with over 1000 items. Around 500 of those were donated by the Heath Robinson Trust, which was set up by the husband of Robinson’s daughter after her death and includes proof prints, advertising booklets, letters and books illustrated by Robinson.
Ben Haworth, creative director at The Beautiful Meme, says the logo for the museum is inspired by the complex machines in Robinson’s illustrations, which he created as a cartoonist and later as an advertising illustrator for brands including Hovis, Crawford’s Biscuits and Shredded Wheat (some of his advertising work is currently on display in an exhibition at McCann London, open until October 22).
“The amazing thing about Heath Robinson’s machines is that they all look like they could actually work, there’s an internal consistency to them and you can’t resist tracing your eyes around the illustration to see what connects to what. When designing the logo, we didn’t want to take the obvious route and litter our identity with frayed string and cogs, but we did want to replicate Robinson’s mad logic, and craft something that felt like a contraption, something that you had to work at a little to read,” he says.
The museum is funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund, and backed by Thomas Heatherwick, Tate director Nick Serota, Aardman and children’s author Michael Rosen. Trustees are still looking to raise an additional £120,000 and are accepting donations here.
You can read more about the museum over on the Trust’s website.