“I don’t want my work to be fashionable, I just want it to travel time and still be relatable when I’m an old woman with Alzheimer’s… I’m really not into elitist design for designers,” explains Lyon-based graphic designer Félicité Landrivon. Having first encountered design (“although I had no clue what it was back then”) collecting xeroxed posters off the streets when finishing high school, Félicité first got a degree in humanities before officially studying graphic design at the age of 21.
As a city, Lyon has an unusually large and thriving culture surrounding flyposting: “there are printed posters and flyers for every single gig whether it happens in a bar, squat, club or music venue,” Félicité explains. It was when collecting these posters that she discovered the work of DIY space Grrrrnd Zero, eventually joining its collective in 2008. Here, she began designing posters and organising shows, despite having no experience. “Belonging to that scene and learning to be versatile from an early age probably influenced my practice and future choices,” she recalls, “and you tend to design a poster differently when you’re involved in what it promotes and when you stick it on the walls yourself.”
Working as a freelance designer since 2014, Félicité’s work still situates itself in the musical and cultural fields, as well as for not-for-profit organisations. Although historically working solo, recently she has been collaborating with a series of female graphic designers which has been “an invaluable experience”. This has included the visual identity for a national theatre near Paris and a feminist periodical titled Panthère Première.
The visibility and promotion of female designers is something Félicité holds in high regard, as despite having developed a distinctive style, it is often assumed that she is male. “I guess I have my own way of combining words, fonts and images because my work is often identified even without a signature. Some people think I’m a guy even after seeing my name on my page – I know it’s a weird name that sounds like an alias but I’m always bummed that they just assume it’s a man’s job,” she tells It’s Nice That.
Félicité’s style is characterised by an air of mischief and fun. Her designs, often jam-packed full of imagery, typography and colour, place an emphasis on “legibility and copiousness” with a nod to underground and vintage material. Among a long list of inspirations, Félicité references 60s and 70s counterculture press, punk minimalism, psychedelic zines, anonymous design, amateurism, vernacular fonts, oddities, clumsiness and dogs. “I love dogs… hence the moniker Bridage Cynophile (“dog unit”) that I randomly use on social networks or radio shows,” she explains.
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