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Graphic Design

June Review

Posted by Alex Bec,

June is only a couple of weeks old and we’ve already had a huge amount of post come through. Some of the best bits are here for your viewing pleasure.

Iron Me On

By Mike Perry. Published by Chronicle Books
DIY fashion fun, just add an iron and this nice bit of self promotion from the ever productive Mike Perry.
www.midwestisbest.com
www.chroniclebooks.com

Crowning Glory: A Book about Hair

Designed and printed by Alice Pattullo
Who knows if bald heads are romantic or not? What I do know is that Crowning Glory has all the nostalgic weight of vintage shop ephemera, a considered layout and illustrations that show off Alice’s drawing and printing skills like a nicely quaffed quiff.
www.alicepattullo.com

Notations 21

By Theresa Sauer. Published by Mark Patty Publishing
For those of us that love music but have no idea how to make it, music notations offer a beautiful, if tiny visual insight to the workings of our favorite composers. This weighty homage to John Cage’s Notations 1968 is full of almost Koncrete Poetic illustrations interspersed with essays from the composers themselves. An Education.
www.markbattypublisher.com

81 People

Designed and Printed by level three Graphic Design students at Bristol, University of the West of England
A nice look into the process and thinking of a graduating year. It’s great to see a catalogue that is so carefully executed to show all the potential of a promising group of students, without giving the game away before their big finale.
www.typenowhere.com

No Brow No.1

All-Rounders Sam Arthur and Alex Spiro. Printed in London by Calvert’s Press
A lovely looking, themed and designed Object of Illustration. The Artists’ themselves look like a Who’s Who to Watch and No Brow Press feels like the quality Champion of new talent. It’s editioned too so it feels extra special.
www.nobrow.net

Material Beliefs

Content from the Interaction Research Studio. Printed by Lecturis. Designed by Hyperkit
Everything in this book is beautifully considered, the design feels perfect and respectful to the content as does the stock it is printed on. The whole thing has a real integrity that echoes the hard work and culmination of it’s subject matter. It’s a real treat to read about something that is so completely relevant and to have our understanding in science bettered by the people that do it best. Hats off to Hyperkit and thank you to the Interaction Research Studio.
www.materialbeliefs.com

Journal de Nîmes

Designed by Tenue de Nîmes. Printed by Printerface
Classic looking bit of print from denim inspired boutique, Tenue de Nîmes. Takes denim as seriously as the Boss.
www.tenuedenimes.com

Talking about Arabic

Written by Mourad Boutros. Published by Mark Batty Publishers
Some interesting tech-talk on how digitalising the historically calligraphic traditions of Arabic affects it and those who can read it. If like me you can’t read Arabic, it also has some interesting bits and pieces on the history of graphic design in the middle east.
www.markbattypublisher.com

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Posted by Alex Bec

Alex is one of the directors of It’s Nice That who now oversees our sister creative agency INT Works. For several years he oversaw the Monday Morning Music Video feature until it came to an end in 2014.

Most Recent: Art View Archive

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    Artist Larry van Pelt wants to spread the word that “Jesus in life makes a difference.” Already a keen artist, Florida-based Larry decided to use his creative skills to spread the message, and began drawing Jesus in a number of different working environments. His collection involves a huge range of work scenarios, including a truck driver, a secretary, a carpet layer, a bodybuilder and a french horn player.

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    We’ve long admired the work of Californian set designer and art director Adi Goodrich. A veritable mistress of creating the sort of strange, cartoon-like scenes that pop with colour and ideas, she’s worked with big-name clients like Michel Gondry and Wieden+Kennedy, but she recently got in touch about an intriguing solo exhibition at The Standard hotel in Hollywood, entitled Like Thiiiiis. The show takes the form of an installation in a glass box behind the hotel’s reception desk, and features a number of images that look to show what it means to be a young creative at the start of your career.

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    In a beautiful profile in The Guardian recently, journalist Tim Lewis travelled out to the Hollywood hills to peek behind the gates of Hockney’s jungle-like home to get a glimpse of what the now 77-year-old artist is up to. As it happened, he had been very busy indeed: making a whole bunch of new paintings that are, in classic Hockney-style, moving in a totally different direction from his previous work.

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    Remember Kim Keever? Back in the summer of 2013, the New York based artist wowed us with his amazing landscapes created in 200-gallon tanks of water and what’s more, he let us in on his process with some fascinating set-up shots. Now, like many a painter before him, Kim has moved from landscapes to more abstract creations albeit within the context of his sculptural practice.

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    This project by artist Erica Allen is an oldie but such a goodie. Way back in 2008 California-born, Brooklyn-based Erica decided to merge a collection of faces from found barbershop posters with discarded shots of studio backdrops, creating a series of oddly alluring fictional portraits. Removed from their original context, the freshly-trimmed gents pictured come across as utterly anonymous and strangely distant, connected to one another only by a crisp shape-up and a gaze fixed somewhere in the distance. And if that rainbow backdrop didn’t inspire the album artwork for Drake’s Nothing Was the Same then I don’t know what did.

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    Edmund Clark is one of the most interesting artists working today, exploring what is arguably the defining issue of the past 13 years. He’s interested in the wars waged by the USA and UK in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as the fall-out from this foreign policy and how it impacts on us here at home. His new book The Mountains of Majeed continues this theme, as it’s a reflection on “the end of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan through photography, found imagery and Taliban poetry.”

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    The secluded French port of Le Havre is a very particular place. Closed off by barriers, it is staffed solely by men, and jobs there are strictly only passed on from father to son. All of which made it the perfect backdrop for artist JR’s contribution to the Women Are Heroes project, which saw him collaborate with the dockers to create a huge image of a woman’s eyes on a 363-metre long container ship.

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    The bright, woozy haze of Wojciech Fangor’s psychedelic paintings is mesmerising. It’s even more so having learnt that the Polish artist, who worked during the 1960s, created these Op art masterpieces entirely in isolation, working in Eastern Europe having not seen the similar works being created in America and Europe by the likes of Bridget Riley and Victor Vasarely. As such, while the images feel familiar; there’s also something exotic about them, pulsing with light created using intensely coloured oil paint applied in thin layers. A new show named Colour-Light-Space opens next month at London’s 3 Grafton Street gallery, and will display a number of works by Wojciech from the 1960s and 1970s that demonstrate his mastery of all three words in the title. It’s fascinating to think of the artist working on these beautiful optical illusions and explorations of the power of painting well before similar works were created elsewhere in the world, and it’s great to have his work celebrated in the way it deserves.

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    Mark Lazenby is the go-to guy for collage that just works. We last featured the artist two years ago and since then his portfolio of pieced together artworks has exploded with even more impressive works and a real exploration of materials and collage techniques.

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    There’s not a pie in the cultural world that James Franco isn’t ready and willing to stick a finger into, and to prove it the actor, director, poet and musician has just announced a new exhibition of his artworks, entitled Fat Squirrel, which is to be held at London’s Siegfried Contemporary gallery. The show is an undeniably eclectic collection, including a number of self portraits of the artist in the guise of various famous historical figures, a deer orgy entitled Triple Team, and some bright painterly collages, not to mention the eponymous overweight rodents which are undoubtedly our favourites.

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    I’m known for my sweet tooth and ability to consume an obscene amount of cakes, sweets and biscuits in one sitting, so it’ll come as no surprise that I was instantly drawn to Will Cotton’s sugary scenes of candy-laced lands.

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    Time and again Amy Woodside gets in touch to let us know about new projects she’s cooked up and time and again we’re powerless to resist them. The New York-based artist is focussed to a fault on her fine art practice where iconic letterforms emerge from meticulously registered screen printing and frantic flourishes of spray paint. Where first she caught our eye with multicoloured wordplay, the constant reduction and refinement of her process has resulted in a new series’ of totemic words like ‘Hero’, ‘Cash’, ‘Hoax’ and ‘Like’, pre-loaded with cultural context and double meaning, writ large on the canvas. What’s the meaning behind them? The interpretation is up to you, but Amy always seems to be critiquing pop culture with its own visual vernacular and playing fast and loose with our ambiguous use of language.

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    The Dutch/Brazilian artist Rafaël Rozendaal is best known for his digital artworks that often take the form of webpages but as he told us at our 2013 creative symposium Here he is increasingly interested in exploring his fascination with light and colour in real-world scenarios. Most recently this has taken the form of his hyper-colourful abstract lenticular paintings, which are made up of layers of different frames and so appear to move when viewed from different angles.