• Arc_cover1
  • Arc2
  • Arc3
  • Arc4
  • Arc5
  • Arc6
  • Arc7
  • Arc8
  • Arc13
  • Arc29
  • Arc33
Graphic Design

Arc 14

Posted by Will Hudson,

Arc magazine is the art and design publication designed and produced by current postgraduate students at the Royal College of Art. The latest issue, Arc 14 is under the editorial guidance of Charmian Griffin and is designed by Mark El-khatib. The issue includes interviews with artist Richard Wentworth and graphic designer Cornel Windlin as well as articles from Marina Warner, Lucy Soutter, Superniche, Michael Crowe, Department 21, Julijonas Urbonas and special artist projects from åbäke and Nina Beier and Marie Lund.

We caught up with Mark El-khatib to find out more…

Tell us about the history of Arc magazine?

Arc is an art and design publication designed and produced by students at the Royal College of Art. It was founded in 1950 as Ark and became a platform for generations of art students to experiment with publishing, writing, editing, design and art direction. It slowly lost momentum in the 70s but interest in publishing the journal picked up again in 2004 when it was relaunched as Arc.

Who has designed previous issues?

With 54 issues of Ark with a k published and 14 so far of Arc with a c, theres far too many designers to mention. One name does pop out though; a certain Alan Fletcher art directed Ark 13 back in 1955.

How did you come to be involved in the design of the current issue?

A new editor – Charmian Griffin – was appointed and after a call for designers a few of us met up to discuss the magazine in its early stages. There were funding problems to begin with and work to be done to secure advertising; by the time it came round to actually starting work on the issue I was the only one still keen so took it on as a project. The next issue is already in development and Robin Howie and Hannah Montague are working on the design.

The magazine is always different, what were you trying to do with this issue?

Pretty much every issue is designed and developed by a new set of students so it inevitably ends up being re-invented each time which keeps it fresh. Myself and Charmian discussed early on that we wanted to concentrate on getting a good selection of interesting and challenging content that reflected interests and current debates in art and design from students, staff and also people outside the college. This is loosely connected together under the editorial theme of ‘language’. When it came to the design I wanted to emphasise the differing formats of the content (interview, article, poetry, discussion, ichat etc) typographically; to lend each article a subtle individuality and help create a sense of rhythm throughout.

What magazines do you read on a regular basis?

I tend to pick and mix with different magazines that I come across rather than regularly subscribe to one. Recently I picked up the latest issues of Fantastic Man and the Happy Hypocrite.

You’ve just graduated from the Royal College of Art, what have you got planned now?

With Arc we’re working on increasing its distribution and also planning a launch party at Frank’s Cafe & Campari Bar on the top of a multi-storey car park in Peckham (15th July 7pm onwards – come along!) Aside from this I’ve got some freelance work coming up and I want to go on holiday somewhere. I really need a holiday!

Buy Arc 14

We are also pleased to announce that Arc magazine is available to buy from the It’s Nice That shop for £5. See all the details here — shop.itsnicethat.com/products/arc-14

Wh-300

Posted by Will Hudson

Will founded It’s Nice That in 2007 and is now director of the company. Once one of the main contributors to the site he has stepped back from writing as the business has expanded. He is a regular guest on the Studio Audience podcast.

Most Recent: Graphic Design View Archive

  1. List-motherdesign_sundancefilmfestival_2

    “It’s been funny seeing ‘Robert Redford to sign off’ on our work plans in recent months," Mark Aver, Mother Design New York design director tells us, revealing the new identity for the 2015 edition of the Sundance Film Festival. The independent film festival, which started in 1978 in Utah, is chaired by Redford, who from the sounds of it, takes quite a hands-on approach.

  2. _llisr-meteor

    French design duo My Name is Wendy caught our eye earlier this year with the innovative D/I/M/E/N/S/I/O/N typographic poster series. The studio recently launched a new site showcasing some great new projects that suggest the pair’s Bauhaus-esque graphic approach is going from strength to strength. Two projects particularly intrigued us – the first being a poster series which acts as a part of a wider project in which the studio creates the fictional land of Meteor.

  3. List-tumblr_ncojdd7pid1tap5jeo1_1280

    Taiwan-born graphic designer Wang Zhi-Hong claims the place that most stimulates his imagination most is one with “no one but me”. In a somewhat reluctant-sounding chat with French magazine Post IM, he paints a careful picture of himself as a man of solitude and precision. Whether or not this makes for a happy life, it certainly makes for some superb graphic design work. From his impressive portfolio we were most drawn to his book design, which takes this idea of a simple, uncluttered existence and turns it into beautiful pared back, precise creations. We were particularly seduced by the monochrome Yohji Yamamoto book designs, with the glorious curved forms of Japanese kanji characters given space to breathe against this restrained aesthetic.

  4. List-dhub_brochures_inside

    Pitching for a design museum identity that will act as the platform for some of the most celebrated designers the world over can’t be an easy task. How to merge tradition and modernity? To create something beautiful, that doesn’t detract from the work itself? So when Mallorcan agency Atlas put forward their proposals for the new Barcelona Design Museum’s identity, it’s perhaps little surprise they worried their ideas were “too modern and risky.”

  5. List00_mitml_posters

    Pentagram partner Michael Bierut and designer Aron Fay have designed a new identity for the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Media Lab, creating this striking, labyrinth-like look that brilliantly communicates the faculty’s “anti-disciplinary” approach.

  6. List-2

    When it comes to psychedelic album artwork, it sometimes feels like the very best might already be behind us – Wes Wilson, Mouse & Kelly and Rick Griffin already having worked through the golden era. There’s something reassuring about the knowledge that graphic designers are still looking for ways to incorporate psychedelic elements into their designs though, and French graphic artist Lucas Donaud is foremost amongst them.

  7. Stationary

    Hotel branding can so often be a dowdy affair, as if the design nods to the temporary nature of the building’s inhabitants – something to move on from, rather than to dwell on. So it’s wonderful to see a brave, opulent new identity for the Connaught in London’s Mayfair, designed by The Partners around a stunning new artwork by Kristjana S Williams which now hangs in the hotel.

  8. List

    I was surprised to learn that Amsterdam’s HOAX studio don’t seem to have been on the site before, and faced with their wide-ranging portfolio it was a challenge to focus in on a narrative that made sense. Founders Bram Buijs, Sven Gerhardt and Steven van der Kaaij joined forces based on their “shared love for typography, material and experimentation” and this passion for fresh creative thinking runs throughout their work.

  9. List

    Creating a cohesive identity for a design conference might not seem like such a tall order, but the reality of producing flyers, bags, programmes and that all-important logo mark for an international event isn’t as simple as you might think. For starters there’s an abundance of conferences out there, each with it’s own unique look and feel, so creating visuals that present a point of difference will always pose a challenge; secondly how on earth do you make a talks timetable look exciting?

  10. List

    Boasting PVC-clad bottoms, surreal jazz photography and beautifully-rendered risograph prints of basketball hoops, Shabazz Projects’ homepage certainly offers a well-curated and striking experience. The LA-based publishing platform was founded by Hassan Rahim and Brian Okarski, releasing art, photography and design-focused books and objects, all with a run of 200 or fewer editions. Stand-out pieces include the Various Basketball Hoops risographs, which put a whimsical spin on these often weary-looking monoliths; and Eric Wrenn and Antje Peters’ Jazz photographs, which place instruments against a dramatic plume of smoke. Hassan and Brian say their aim is to “provoke and surprise,” and from the images on their site alone, they’re certainly not letting themselves down.

  11. Hellotalja_kit-list-image

    Many a blue-sky-thinker and envelope-pusher has been extolling the virtues of meditation and mindfulness to pseudo-spiritually swell their business jargon lately. So it’s refreshing when a beautifully branded, creatively-minded product emerges that promises to offer that lucrative “pause from modern life.”

  12. List

    If all the magazines and small publications that used the internet as their subject matter were dumped on your head it’d be curtains for you – there’s bloody loads of them. Some, like Offscreen, deal with the people that make digital culture happen and try to bring these unsung heroes out from behind their screens into the RGB limelight, others, like French publication Nichons – Nous Dans l’Internet (Tits – We In The Internet) are more conceptually-minded, analysing and assessing the social and cultural phenomena brought about by the ubiquity of technology.

  13. Main

    Setting up a design studio and changing your name to a cool pseudonym is a good two-fingers-up to life on the quiet side. Parisian designer Julien Ducourthial decided to make this leap, and now overseas The Jazzist, offering bold, fluoro design work “serving in fields of graphic design, illustration and art direction in digital & printed media.” When Julien emailed us he told us he was inspired by 8-bit imagery and cartoons, which gave us an immediate inkling that we were going to like his work. Anyone looking to commission a great French designer any time soon? Julien is your man.