‘I wanted to do something that was different, conceptual and intriguing – it’s a place that’s been very inspiring for me. It’s the heritage – the narrow streets, the buildings, the glitz and glamour. It’s got a heartbeat’, explains Malinic.
He adds, ‘Once you look behind the history it’s got an enormous amount of heritage. People now take it as face value, with the shopping and getting annoyed at Leicester Square.’
The show, cleverly titled West End show, will present ten posters, each dedicated to one West End area, such as Soho, Covent Garden and Fitzrovia.
The ornate, bold designs capture the vibrancy of the area, with a healthy smattering of the gaudy neon and glittering lights that festoon its streets.
Each poster also features a few lines of poetry, also written by Malinic, that provide a context for the area and the design.
The Holborn poster was influenced by Malinic’s discovery that the current Sainsbury’s site in the area was once a beautiful restaurant, with the visuals referencing its logo. ‘It used to seem so much fun and so sociable’, he says. ‘Now it’s a concrete building with glass windows – there doesn’t seem to be much laughter there any more.’
The project proved quite a leap from the usual commercial illustration projects that Malinic usually works on.
‘I wanted to do something that really stood out’, he says. ‘Graphic design should have a purpose. It was more challenging than I thought – a self-initiated brief creates interesting benchmarks for self-critique. Its been really challenging for my work ethic.’
West End Show runs from February 2 – 28 at Nancy Victor Gallery, 6 Charlotte Place, London W1T