Some say designers are born not made and if so then the brothers Wouters might be an excellent case in point. The Dutch duo have long been favourites of ours here at It’s Nice That with their shared devotion to aesthetic excellence. Job is better known as Letman whose illustrated typography will be familiar to almost anyone interested in the graphic arts. His quirky style has made him the go-to guy for publications as diverse as The New York Times, Creative Review and Playboy as well as fashion icons like Tommy Hilfiger and Dries van Noten and we also commissioned him for the gorgeous Nice screenprint that was released with Issue 5 of our magazine.
In July, Job’s first book was released giving us the perfect excuse to pore over his wondrous abilities all over again.
And to prove there’s definitely something in the Wouters genes, brother Roel is similarly supertalented and was one of the interviewees in our first ever publication. Initially trained as a graphic designer, Roel now works across video, print, digital, installation and performance but as one of the founders of the Conditional Design Manifesto he has come to define his creative efforts under this new umbrella.
“Our work focuses on processes rather than products: things that adapt to their environment, emphasize change and show difference,” the manifesto reads. “Instead of operating under the terms of Graphic Design, Interaction Design, Media Art or Sound Design, we want to introduce Conditional Design as a term that refers to our approach rather than our chosen media. We conduct our activities using the methods of philosophers, engineers, inventors and mystics.”
He is putting these ideas into practice at the Moniker studio he set up with fellow conditional design founders Luna Maurer and Jonathan Puckey and their video work in particular is a fascinating exploration of this new approach.
At Here, Job and Roel will present a dialogue-cum-lecture-cum-performance, dealing with recurring ideas they both deal with in different ways, including craftsmanship vs automatization, conceptual driven design vs style driven design and nostalgia vs futurism.
Three years after the brothers created the Rainbowgun for our If You Could Collaborate project (see the video above), it is a tremendous honour to be welcoming them to our biggest ever event.
Here takes place on Friday and although tickets are sold out we will be documenting the talks in due course.