The annual Montrouge Contemporary Art Fair (Salon de Montrouge) fills galleries with the upcoming artists to keep an eye on. An art fair full of excitement, possibilities and new talent needs an identity that embodies this sentiment, with graphic design of a high calibre to match the work it represents. Since 2016 this has been a task entrusted with Atelier Baudelaire, a Paris-based design studio well versed in applying creative direction to the cultural field.
Atelier Baudelaire’s identity this year saw the studio team up with another, GeneralPublic Studio, creating an identity that sees a colour palette of deep reds to light pink sweep through the gallery and onto printed collateral too. 2018 marks the fair’s 63rd edition and this longevity is brought to the forefront of the identity: “The strength of the work jointly produced is the combination of bold colours and the intent to display the number 63 as if it was ‘escaping’ from the background through a framing system based on the pink and red colours that divide the poster,” Atelier Baudelaire tells It’s Nice That.
Creating a divide between the selected colour palette of pink and red allowed the paired up studios “to develop the identity and its variations on different mediums with a dynamic system,” it explains. “We sought to give the number 63 both a hybrid and lively feel.” A regular visual trope that crops up across the identity is a rendered 3D object, based on a hand gesture and digital stroke, creating a “fluid aspect from afar and a polygonal one when one gets closer,” Atelier Baudelaire continues. “This uncanny object, in between painting, sculpture and virtual image, allowed us to embrace the diversity of the different medium that symbolises the essence of the fair.” The studio’s choice of typography also matches the 3D object, using the BTP typeface edited by A is for Apple. A typeface inspired by technical drawing software, it was selected as the studios were looking for “sharp, bold and angular shapes, that could work in association with the number 63 in 3D, crenellated with polygons.”
The identity translates across all mediums of artworks displayed in the fair, particularly video and photographic works which have a growing presence in the gallery spaces and echo the identity by “playing with light,” says the studio. “The drop shadows detach the number from the background and the photographic grain divides the colours onto different areas.” This thoughtful application continues across signage too. Designed together with Vincent Bourdon, it uses the same grain texture but applies it playfully, reproducing “gradients by splashing paint on the pink and red walls of the fair."
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