Thursday, May 28, 2009

Offf 2009. Day 3. Stefan Sagmeister

Even though I was a little bit tired after long day, the presentation of Stefan Sagmeister was an absolutely must see for me. I was looking forward to it since I arrived at OFFF. It was an absolutely highlight of this conference. And by that I don't mean the fact that he gave his presentation dressed in dotted woman dress (reminded me the 50's), but I mean the quality of it. The hall was booming with ovations and gave him a standing one in the end. An incredible experience, I must say.
The presentation was based on his experience in graphic design during the long career - the book Things I have learned in my life so far. By the way, if you have learned something in your life you can share with it here. He spoke about happiness, the levels of it and design that makes us happy. "Do more of the things you like to do and fewer of the things you dont' like" was his advise. Sitting all day in front of a computer screen doesnt improve the creativity, so he advised to take distance from it and travel, even if it is a hotel room next door.
Sagmeister showcased his latest project, for instance the new identity for Casa da Musica, Portugal. This building, created by Rem Koolhaas, has a specific asymmetric geometric shape. He took 6 pictures from different angles and used them to create the new logo. The color of each logo was added by a basic software, which traced the colors from for example picture of Bethoven. A simple and yet practical solution. Another interesting project has been executed in The Netherlands. The installation "Obsessions make my life worse but my work better" was made from a copper coins (600.000 euro cents) layed out on a grid by a group of 100 volunteers in one week. Unfortunately this work didn't last long, because after the project was finished some guy began to collect the coins and police, called by a local citizens, came and cleaned up everything. Another project I liked was a statue design for Vilcek prize 2009 (prize for an immigrant artist and scientist, USA). Sagmeister came to a very interesting solution by which he made each of these statues unique and personal. The shape look simple, but if you turn it upside down you would see the name of the winner. This pyramid shape grows from a typography beneath it, so each statue is different. Clever solution.

He is a truly visionary and creative artist. I found his speach inspiring and motivating for a young students/designers.

extra links: speaking at offf /1, speaking at offf /2 , speaking at off /3, interview, ted talk, foto 1, foto 2, foto 3

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