Been working a lot with ThisNext, and i’m sure you may have noticed i’m pretty into the sticker branding they’ve got going for them… and with the amount of graphics i’ve been developing using their signature font, VAG Rounded, i’ve grown quite attached to it. So when i looked into it and realized it had quite a history behind its initially bizarre name… had to share. So here it is: Developed for Volkswagen AG in 1979, VAG Rounded is a variation on nineteenth-century grotesque sans serif designs. What is unusual about VAG Rounded is that the terminal of every stroke is rounded. Use it for technical or instructional manuals, or advertising. Designers: David Bristow, Gerry Barney, Ian Hay, Kit Cooper, and Terence Griffin.
Gone is the day of the fancy designer cd cover, here are the days of customization… and design emulating the mixed tape/cd look of DIY covers? The new Beck album “The Information” comes out tomorrow, and over at Design Observer, Dmitri Siegel shares with us the playful customizable nature of the cover art… it is blank, and you get stickers. Not any stickers, but stickers from some of the best artists around (yay Genvieve Gaukler) Cover art for The Information by Beck. Art direction and design by Matt Maitland/Gerard Saint at Big City Active with Beck. Sticker art by: Jody Barton, Beck, Juliette Cezar, Estell & Simon, David Foldvari, Genevieve Gauckler, Michael Gillette, Jasper Goodall, Mercedes Helnwein, Han Lee, Matt Maitland, Ari Michelson, Parra, Melanie Pullen, Gay Rie[***]aleksey Shirokov, Will Sweeney, Kam Tang, Adam Tullie, Kensei Yabuno, Vania Zouravliov, 2006.
From the Amazon description for Beck “The Information”, “The artwork for The Information is either non-existent or infinite, depending on one’s point of view. Each copy will come in a blank package with one of four collectible sticker sheets specially designed by European and American artists and representative of the unique Beck aesthetic.” ….. Seeing Beck perform on Saturday! Anyone else going to be at the LA Weekly Detour?
Anyone else notice the Ascii art on the Urban Outfitters bags? Mostly 8’s with some d’s, b’s, T’s and Y’s thrown in to help shape out the letters… but the ascii art lover in me came back out when i noticed this… here’s a quick scan of it (bigger below) ~ will try to remember to add a picture of the full bag if there’s interest.
While those miniatures below intrigue me, Cynthia Greig’s more recent “Representations” series mesmerize me and mess with my head far more… “Focusing on the representation of ordinary things, I draw directly onto 3-dimensional objects (which I have painted over in white paint) to create visual hybrids that appear to vacillate between drawing and photography, black-and-white and color, signifier and signified. My photographs intend to draw attention to how we see.” And that, they certainly do… below are the more which i simply can’t stop staring at… its as if you’re living in a 2 dimensional 3D world… and i love that the phone line is cut… not sure why, but its quite amusing today. (Great title for the series as well.)
“Life-Size” by Cynthia Greig really messes with your sense of scale. (And if you saw the new CSI last night, doesn’t this remind you of that insanely detailed mini murder replica?) In her statement about the work, i love this excerpt “I am fascinated by the fact that almost anything (from sunglasses and cameras to hypodermic needles and condoms) can be found in miniature. I’m equally intrigued by the desire to collect such tiny replicas of objects from our own material world. As a smaller scale surrogate of the original, the miniature seems to imply the existence of some kind of alternative universe where we (as larger bodies) are like gods, omnipotent and in control.”
It’s fascinating to me how detailed the pieces she made are, and how she manages to recontextualize the everyday by having people interact with them as they would the originals… and that she picks everyday objects like condoms, pills, hypodermic needles, pipes, cameras and more… More of my favorites below.
I am realizing i really have a thing for when science and design meet ~ i now look forward to SEED as much as i do Wallpaper. So when just saw their pullout “Thank a Science Teacher Postcard Campaign” had to scan them in to show you the playful designy sciency crests they made. Fun stuff, click image to see larger.
Checked out the Abbot Kinney Street Fair down in Venice Beach last weekend, and amongst your usual bazzar type vendors, found this gem of an artist, Ariel Olguin, who’s work is definitely worth sharing. Larger images of some of my favorites below, including the mural and pieces hanging in Trim (an edgy hair salon that was filled with pirates, art, and booze as well as people getting their hair done that day ~ great mix, no?). But beyond the mind blowing street/liquid feeling art and hats, Ariel’s story is one of those classic rags to riches, American dream style tales…
“I was born in 1979 in the mountain town of Balcarse, Argentina. I came to the United States in 2000 for vacation in Miami and never left. I was working as an elevator operator and realized how much people appreciated my work. I sold my art to the passengers on the lift. With the last 250 dollars that I had in my pockets I made my way across the states to California. Thanks to some dude, I was able to live in a mobile home in the Home Depot parking lot. In the beginning I was drawing some shit just for kicks, to pass the time. Somehow I ended up with a pretty decent internship at an advertising agency as an illustrator, in the creative department. It was at this time I realized I needed to get out and show my work.” Wow? Go see more below.
Like the Billboards only for design? Or thats their idea anyhow… ironically, the interaction on their site pains me greatly, i roll my mouse around and the site bounces up and down and gah! too much. But the idea is cool, a nice way to see who the Top 40 Design Sites are for the week as judged by merely 3 sites… Designaside, Dope Awards, Website Design Awards. And felt it was worth a mention, since sometimes even in the bounciest of sites we might be able to find some worthwhile pages to browse? Design Charts [via UnBeige]
Does your website have a good soul deep down beneath all that CSS? Can you recognize these? [Here we have Amazon, MySpace, Google, stripped down to their basics.] Fun project by Mazamedia entitled ISP: Internet Soul Potraits ~ really recontextualizes the way to perceive your everyday websites… via Computerlove & Core77
Remember the gorgeous Flower Girl from Pop Cling i mounted on that piece of wood the other day? Well that piece was the work of Ben Collison, an SF based artist/illustrator who also has a lot of gorgeous acrylic pieces i’m falling for tonight. (my favorites above, but i do have a soft spot for flowy organic feeling pieces and dragons ~ especially on wood). His inspirations for the Flower Girl can be seen in his older pieces as well… so go take a look. Also has a great stencil piece worth taking a look at.
New Tags launched on the sides of NOTCOT! This time we are sponsored by Pop Cling, which brings the art of local artists into your home in the form of high quality adhesive prints. This Costa Mesa, CA based company supports great local artists like Madsteez and Ben Collison to name a few. While this trend of moving away from traditional wallpaper and framed art has evolved into vinyl sticker graphics and magnetic wallpaper to let you fully customize your spaces ~ it fascinates me that Pop Cling has taken it to the next level by creating full art pieces to can simply stick wherever you please. One of my favorite pieces is Ben Collison’s Flower Girl, which they sent me to try out ~ review below! So, explore the tags! And see some of the different pieces they have, and some creative places to stick them up ~ all pieces are printed in limited runs and come with numbered certificates of authenticity.
While i hate to further indulge this media circus that has been Banksy’s Barely Legal… i couldn’t resist going back today to see what a front page LA Times image (with article on front of the California section) & expected animal rights controversy yesterday turned the show into… The result? A line longer than one would have expected at the opening to Space Mountain… one of the most bizarre mixed crowds pouring into a small downtown LA street/alley. An overheated fire hazard where you are elbow to elbow looking at “art” while being yelled at to keep circulating so others too can see the art. And saddest of all? No more pink elephant… just a slightly pinkish hued one… And the security (hardcore woman with beret and all) was trained to search my purse for a SHARPIE - not weapons….. So kudos to Banksy, for using LA to do what it’s best at. It was certainly one hell of a weekend. [New updated images in the Gallery… extensive discussion on BoingBoing… and tons of youtubes of the pink elephant.]
Dropped by the GOOD Magazine LA Launch Saturday night - and it was an interesting scene - the Bacardi and Pom were flowing (as well as Fiji Water and Pom Teas) - took place at St. Vibiana’s downtown (a historic converted cathedral) - had some really sweet flat packed looking benches/tables with trays of 1” buttons, plants, magazines ~ and an interesting mix of dj’s and live bands throughout the night…
For those who haven’t heard, Good Magazine is 26 year old Ben Goldhirsh’s newest venture, fueled by 12 under 25’s looking to change the world by creating their own media voice. [Check out the LATimes article] From a design standpoint - their layouts are really fun and worth taking a look at ~ lots of WIRED-esque information visualization (although i must admit, some of it slightly over the top for readability), great photography spreads, and love the typography (clean & strong). One of my favorite aspects of the premier issue? MORE PARTY ANIMAL stickers. (full scan below).
Wallpaper turns the big 1-0. I may only be 23, but i do remember them from back in the day. I also love that together with Phaidon they’ve finally released some vibrant pocket sized travel guides, and will definitely pick some up for the next adventure. So just a quick shout out to them - they’ve been inspiring and influencing my love of all things gorgeously ingenious for a whole decade now.
Of the pieces shown at Barely Legal, this set grabbed me the most. Statues just pull you more in person, vs the paintings… and really just watching PEOPLE at this show is worth going back for. Check out the images below (aka cropped and sorted for your viewing pleasure) - or you can also view my larger unedited set in the Gallery.