An Abandoned Gas Station Gets A Psychedelic New Paint Job

Gas stations are typically greasy, sooty, inhospitable places. But in White City–a district in northwest London–one shuttered station has been transformed into a trippy rainbow paradise.

Here After, an installation by graphic designers Craig & Karl, was commissioned to celebrate the gas station’s transition into a pop-up event space. White City was once home to the BBC’s headquarters, and the district is now being redeveloped as a residential neighborhood. The gas station’s adaptive reuse is emblematic of the former media hub’s (hopeful) new life as a vibrant destination.

[Photo: Jamie M Smith/courtesy Craig & Karl]
To come up with the supergraphics, Craig & Karl looked to the color scheme of the retro test cards the BBC once aired between shows and the directional arrows that guide drivers through gas stations. The motif is a conscious nod to the district and site’s history, and how it’s being remixed for the future.

“Conceptually, we liked the link between a test card and the notion of this being a reset for the petrol station site as it finds new and alternate uses,” Craig & Karl tell Co.Design via email. “And graphically, its bold colors and simple design sit very much within our visual world. Now that the petrol station has retired from its functional life, we thought it should enjoy itself and express itself in a different way.”

I bet Lisa Frank would approve of the gas station’s rainbow-festooned new look. See it in the slide show above.