A utopian ideal: Peter Chadwick’s Thamesmead poster series

Graphic designer Peter Chadwick has created a new series of posters about Thamesmead, the London town built in the 1960s and 70s to re-house families living in cramped Victorian slums.

Chadwick’s posters (there are 14 in the series) are inspired by sound recordings and films about Thamesmead from the London Metropolitan Archives. The area’s architecture – a mix of low-rise Brutalist blocks and modern townhouses – was based on a utopian vision of social housing. It was once described as “the town of the 21st century” but is perhaps best known for being the filming location of Stanley Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange.

Text in Chadwick’s posters is taken from original recordings and press coverage from the 1960s and 70s. The colour scheme references A Clockwork Orange and provides a bold contrast against photographs of grey concrete buildings.

Chadwick was recently invited to display the posters at Made in Thamesmead, an arts festival supported by Peabody, and decorated a garage in the area’s Moorings Estate with his designs.

He is now selling posters in a limited edition run. A2 designs are priced at £30 + pp and A1 at £45 +pp, and both sizes are printed on matt 200gsm paper. Contact: info@thisbrutalhouse.com for details.

Chadwick, who runs design studio Popular, has been sharing images of Brutalist architecture from around the world via his twitter account, @BrutalHouse, since 2014. Earlier this year, he worked with Phaidon to publish This Brutal World, a book celebrating the power and beauty of Brutalist buildings. You can read our interview with him about the book here.