This new facsimile edition of High Street, originally published in 1938, arrives just as our current high street faces its leanest time. Inside these pages, you'll find twenty-four of Ravilious' beautiful illustrations of tidy shop & business fronts, from family butchers to firework shops, each with accompanying text by Richards. There is a diversity on display here that feels rich in comparison to our current landscape of generic big brand stores and online marketplaces and it is hard to resist the nostalgic urge that whispers 'things were much better back then' in our ear as we read.
Famously, the lithographic printing plates for the book were destroyed in the London Blitz, meaning only 2000 copies of High Street were originally printed. This lovely hardcover reproduction includes an essay by Gill Saunders, Senior Curator of Prints at the Victoria and Albert Museum, that sets the book in its historical context.