So, I posted in a round up a while back about Stefan Sagmeister’s book, but I wanted to do this week’s artist feature about him, because although a lot of design NERDs, such as myself, may know about his work, there are a lot of people that do not know about him or about his justified fame.
Sagmeister is so awesome for a plethora of reasons. 1) He is a graphic designer. 2) He takes an unusual (by today’s standards) approach to graphic design. It is clear that he thinks of graphic design in a traditional, ‘literal’ way, but still makes his work very fresh. 3) He is clearly super involved in inspiring new graphic design around the internet and world. 4) He doesn’t care about stupid rules. 5) He shared his life lessons with the world. I think when the day comes that I am ready to share my life lessons with the world I will be a ‘grown up, bigger person’ and I will be significantly less cynical. I respect his putting-himself-out-there-ness. 6) He is a damn cool old-ish guy.
In his newest book and in much of his work, he tends to unconventionally use real-life, existing materials to spell out words, or to make us re-consider the idea or the text in a new way. Sometimes with added perspective, or in a more tactile, literal sense.
Although there is a label of ‘graphic designer’ put on him, I love how he does not let that limit his perspective or work. So much of his work is 3-dimentional or art-installation based. The title of ‘graphic designer’ indicates his background and perspective perhaps, but his work maintains that he is a general, innovative creative. And however he decides to move forward with that, damn straight, he does.
Here’s an excerpt from an interview with him:
“Design can seem so impersonal and I’ve read that you want to be able to touch someone’s life. Do you think it is possible and have there been any times where someone has told you so?”
“Yes, I do think it’s possible, and I do think it’s very hard. The only instance where I knew I touched someone’s heart for sure was when my friend Reini came to New York from Vienna and was afraid that none of the sophisticated NY women would talk to him and he’d wind up very lonely. We printed a poster with his photo and the headline: “Dear girls, please be nice to Reini” and plastered it all over the Lower East Side. He was touched. And got a girlfriend.”
All images found on www.sagmeister.com/work/featured .