“Evoking meaning rather than boldly presenting truth is the essence of typographer Karel Martens work” says the disembodied voice of this eight-and-a-half minute profile film following the Dutch pedagogic graphic designer, created by the Submarine Channel. What Martens has achieved in his extraordinary career would not fit into a film 100 times as long but what this short does do is shed a renewing light on the importance of play as a mode for thought.
As a stalwart of Dutch modernism, this is not an established idea of “playful” but more looking at regular systems for irregular, unexpected elisions in form, information and meaning. Which is in some way explained by his constant experimentation with colour – “I have always marvelled at the fact that with the three primary colours, you can make all the colours in the world” – and with subjects like maths and science which are introduced to inform his work, rather than merely displaying the information of that particular subject.
Martens does not disappoint in the personality scale either, he’s a joy to watch and I for one will be quoting him the next time I drink a mug of red: “I think it’s important that like good wine, a design has a lingering flavour.” (Exit scene.)
- Best of the Web is here, and so is the weekend!
- Animator Saiman Chow’s trippy idents for Adult Swim’s Rick and Morty
- Friday Mixtape: Legendary record label, 4AD
- Risograph photograph journal, This is the Same Ocean, returns with a sixth issue
- Illustrator Gizem Vural impresses us with attention-grabbing personal work and commissions
- Colophon Foundry re-releases its road-sign inspired typeface, Montefiore, with new specimen
- Jon Burgerman on his utterly brilliant Instagram experiments
- The photos Juergen Teller took while waiting for Rihanna
- Animator and director James Curran’s amusing 30-day Gifathon project in Tokyo
- "Before I was a graphic designer I had nearly no idea what one was": meet Austin Redman
- Meet Berlin-based studio Büro Bum Bum
- Matthew Raw: the east London artist making clay great again