Many discoveries were made this week: we learned that creative types dig the weirdest words, that a fake brand can have important consequences, that emojis began life (sort of) back in the 15th Century and that everyone in Kosovo is lovely.
These findings arrived thanks to our four wonderful Nicer Tuesdays speakers: The Liminal Space’s Amanda Gore, Pentagram partner Naresh Ramchandani, author of The Story of Emoji Gavin Lucas and photographer Jane Stockdale.
Amanda enlightened us about her agency’s Timeless project, a fake brand of beauty products housed in a temporary shop-like installation in Old Street station, east London, aiming to raise awareness about the reality of women’s fertility and egg-freezing. “We were shocked by egg freezing companies’ medicalisation of the female body,” she says. “We wanted to distil key information about the procedure into something accessible and clear, and create a disruptive intervention. The clearest vehicle for that was a brand.”
It turns out Pentagram partner Naresh Ramchandani’s favourite words are home (“It’s about safe spaces… at it’s heart is ‘om’, where you feel most at peace”), pathetic (“The ultimate put-down, where sometimes the snarky part of you overrides the Ghandi part of you”) and maybe. The latter is his favourite because it’s one of the ones he’s found hardest to say. When he was younger, he says, he “wanted certainty”: “did The Pixies invent grunge? Of course they did. Is The Wasteland a masterpiece?” Now that he’s older, he’s at peace with things not being totally black and white. “A door is slammed shut by an absolute and left open by a big maybe,” he says.
In the spirit of investigative journalism, we wanted to know what your favourite words are, so we asked some of the lovely folks at Nicer Tuesdays to spill.
From words to little pictures that speak at least a few words, the lovely Gavin Lucas told us the story of his story of emoji, the miniature icons that have transformed the way we communicate. The writer detailed emoji’s origins as decorative glyphs used in the early days of printing through to Puck magazine in 1881 printing a handy primitive guide to creating faces using punctuation marks and 1990s Microsoft system font Wingdings. It was a hilarious and joyful typographic romp through time, answering an important question: “emojis and emoticons are the same thing, right?”
“NO THEY’RE FUCKING NOT.”
Last through the gates but certainly not least was Jane Stockdale, who talked us through her incredible project Go Go Kosovo, which documents the Kosovan Olympics team’s preparation for their first ever Olympic Games. It’s a heartwarming tale of a country with a history of trouble and hardship, told through Jane’s images in a beautifully warm and personal way. There’s a video documentary in the pipeline too, and we can’t wait to see it.
Event partner: Revue
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Supported by Park Communications
Nicer Tuesdays is also supported by Park Communications one of London’s eminent, most friendly and approachable printers.
Nicer Tuesdays is a monthly event curated by It’s Nice That held at Protein Studios in London. Tickets for the event sell out quickly, to buy tickets ahead of general sale please sign up to our newsletter.
About the Author
Emily joined It’s Nice That as Online Editor in the summer of 2014 after four years at Design Week. She is particularly interested in graphic design, branding and music. After working It's Nice That as both Online Editor and Deputy Editor, Emily left the company in 2016.