Artist Eva Rothschild’s art work, Good Times, commissioned by Art on the Underground was displayed on the front cover of millions of Pocket Tube Maps in 2011.
Good Times derives from and shares its title with a sculpture by the artist.
Eva Rothschild, who often uses a rainbow spectrum of colours in her work, has designed a ring made up of the Tube line colours with a stark black background, referencing the dominance of darkness as we travel through the tunnels underground.
Good Times and many of Rothschild’s sculptures stem from the abstraction of different visual codes and imagery. Her iconography is informed by contemporary culture – music, film, literature and religion.
The ring or belt form implies linkage, which can be interpreted into what the Tube essentially does for London. Rothschild is particularly interested in the way objects have a power over us, especially in relation to religious thought and superstition. This is reflected in her fascination with sacred or lucky symbols, ranging from spheres and pyramids to new age charms.
The image can also be seen as a life belt, playing with the idea of the Tube being a ‘life saver’ in London and also of the Tube Map being a ‘life saver’ for customers in terms of using such an enormous transport system.
Eva Rothschild, commissioned artist, said: “The design for Art on the Underground’s commission comes directly from a recent sculpture called ‘Good Times’. The image takes the form of a ring made up of the Tube line colours, creating an expanded spectrum.
“The spectrum and colours also hold specific meaning of their own, echoing a life belt, for me this reference seemed appropriate because so many of us, including myself, depend on the Tube, its iconic map and London’s huge transport system in order to go about our day-to-day lives”