Articles tagged London

With an estimated 3.5 million commuters on the London Underground each day, the system can be a bit of a daunting experience for tourists.

But a clever infographic by Free Tours of London delves into the dos and don’ts of travelling on the tube as safely and easily as possible.

The top ten hacks include the best place to stand on the platform, avoiding card clash. and handy shortcuts around the network.

Discover the cheeky cheats here and let us know your own tips and tricks for getting around the capital.

Do you know your King’s Cross from your King’s Road?

The Culture Trip has released a fun new quiz, testing you on common knowledge and some more obscure facts about Old London Town.

The quiz covers everything from Harrods and the Crown Jewels to EastEnders and Alexander McQueen, taking in Byron, the Beatles, and the British Museum in between.

Play the quiz here and let us know how well you know the capital.

Street art, graffiti, and outdoor guerrilla advertising are all well recognised forms of communication on the street; the works can convey a message, tag, identity, or a concept which is reflected through its graphical elements and style.

‘Street Art’, as a concept in its varying forms, is photographed up to around 3000 times a day on average, making it an ideal media platform on which to capture a relatively large target audience with guaranteed daily footfall.

The exact classification of these forms of ‘Street Art’ has become somewhat of a grey area in the last few years, with a fair amount of overlap emerging between ‘conventional’ street art (lower case), graffiti, and guerrilla advertising.

According to Wikipedia, street art is defined as ‘a visual art created in public locations, usually unsanctioned artwork executed outside of the context of traditional art venues’. Graffiti, however, is classed as ‘writing or drawings that have been scribbled, scratched, or painted illicitly on a wall or other surface, often within public view’. And guerrilla advertising is defined as ‘an advertisement strategy concept designed for businesses to promote their products or services in an unconventional way with little budget to spend. The main point of guerrilla advertising is that the activities are done exclusively on the streets.’

In Shoreditch alone, there are famous and up-and-coming graffiti artists painting new tags and idents on a regular basis (as featured below), all fighting for their messages to be seen above others in the area. Graffiti artists see the street scene as a great way to advertise themselves for free, obtaining premium viewing space in the process; however, many graffiti tags can been seen as vandalism, repetitive, and saturating an already overcrowded street art scene.





In comparison, there are some stunning pieces of conventional street art around the Shoreditch area. The below example, by Aron Nople, was commissioned by a firm of solicitors on the corner of Mundy Street and has now become a tourist hotspot.
Street art

Street art can also cross over into the field of advertising, much like the example below, entitled ‘The Cycle of Futility’. Its creator Insa, better known for his animated GIFS, has integrated street art and guerrilla advertising via the use of augmented reality. By downloading the app (Gif-iti on iTunes) and holding your phone up towards the painting, the art becomes animated, breathing life into an otherwise two-dimensional piece of art.






Here is another more obvious example of guerrilla advertising along Old Street. Due to its unique placement on the pavement and the communication of a very direct message with a clear purpose of intent, it effectively communicates the brand’s meaning.
Guerrilla advertising


Graffiti, street art, and guerrilla advertising all engage with their audience via means of a ‘brand experience’, whether the experience be that of the artist promoting themselves, a brand promotion, or an iconic repeated graphical style used within the work. Therefore an argument could be had that actually, street art and graffiti are both a form of guerrilla advertising. Or perhaps graffiti, street art, and guerrilla advertising are all Street Art, by virtue of the fact they are all created on the street. Let us know what you think ‒ do the three forms overlap and which do you think is most effective?

By Karen Stevens, Art Director at The Think Tank

Karen’s selection of the best Street Art in Shoreditch will be revealed on Thursday.

Following on from our coverage of BIG’s Serpentine Gallery Pavilion, we’re taking a look at some of the best culture spots in London. Some you’ve probably heard of or even visited, but others are definitely little-known treasures. Here’s our choice selection:

1. Somerset House
Somerset House, which has existed in some form since the Tudor times, is one of the most versatile culture venues in the capital, offering exhibitions, installations, screenings, and even an ice rink during winter.

2. Southbank Centre
Like Somerset House north of the river, Southbank Centre offers a diverse variety of events all year round, including food markets and festivals.

3. Leighton House Museum
This intriguing museum in Holland Park was once home to painter Frederic Leighton and boasts an incredible ‘Arab Hall’ (pictured), transporting visitors to another place and time. The museum also showcases Leighton’s work, which remains in various stages of completion.

4. Secret Cinema
Providing full-on immersive experiences, Secret Cinema holds cinematic events at locations that are revealed to ticket holders in the run-up to the screening.

5. Whitechapel Gallery
A free gallery on the edge of central London, Whitechapel Gallery has a long history of premiering ground-breaking artists, including Picasso, Rothko, and Kahlo ‒ an ethos it stands by today.

Honourable mention: Museums at South Kensington
The trinity of the Natural History Museum, the Science Museum, and the V&A, all within easy walking distance of each other and offering something to everyone of all ages, from geology to fashion.

Which culture spot would you put on the list? Let us know.
Got an idea for our Friday Five series? Tweet us @thinktanklondon.