On Tuesdays, March 4, 11, 18, and 25, the Walker Art Center and AIGA (American Institute of Graphic Arts) Minnesota present
, a lecture series showcasing graphic designers from around the country and the world. This year’s series focuses on individuals from North America who have reinvented their design practices, foregoing conventional career paths to follow their own ambitions and explore new opportunities. Insights 2008 includes talks by graphic artist Marian Bantjes from British Columbia, Canada (March 4); Lorraine Gauthier and Alejandro Quinto from Work Worth Doing in Toronto (March 11); Prem Krishnamurthy and Adam Michaels of Project Projects in New York (March 18); and California-based designer Ed Fella (March 25).
Presentations will be webcast live and archived on the Walker Channel (channel.walkerart.org).
The 7 pm lectures take place in the Walker Cinema. Individual tickets are $20 ($15 Walker and AIGA members; $10 students) and series tickets are $70 ($48). Tickets may be purchased at walkerart.org/tickets or by calling 612.375.7600.
Tuesday, March 4, 7 pm
Bowen Island, British Columbia, Canada
After a decade working as a book designer and typesetter in Vancouver, British Columbia, Marian Bantjes decided to chuck it all and reinvent her practice. Widely hailed in the recent resurgence of ornamentation in graphic design, her work draws on 20 years of experience in painting and printmaking. Now a self-proclaimed “graphic artist,” Bantjes produces designs of intricate craft, elaborate patterning, and complex ornamentation. Her acclaimed work includes commissions for a limited-edition cover for Wallpaper magazine, catalogues and bags for Saks Fifth Avenue, and illustrations for such publications as Yale Alumni Magazine, Wired, and Print. Bantjes has taught at the Emily Carr Institute in Vancouver and is an author for the design-discussion Web site Speak Up.
Tuesday, March 11, 7 pm
Work Worth Doing, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Lorraine Gauthier and Alejandro Quinto
Inspired by their shared experience as part of the inaugural team of designers at Bruce Mau’s Institute without Boundaries program and its Massive Change project, Lorraine Gauthier and Alejandro Quinto formed their interdisciplinary studio, Work Worth Doing, in 2004 with the simple yet complicated goal of creating positive social and environmental actions for corporations, governments, and communities. Recent projects include: Now House, a demonstration project for green housing, which will turn a post-World War II house into a near-zero energy home; an installation and research project that asks the question “What if Greenland was Africa’s water fountain?”; a proposal for civic participation in discussing democratic solutions to terrorism in Madrid involving text messaging and public projection; and Hyperborder, a research and book project about the U.S.-Mexico border in collaboration with architect Fernando Romero. Prior to Work Worth Doing, Gauthier operated her own successful communications design studio for more than 10 years, and Quinto studied new media and design at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design and at the University of Brighton, England, and recently served as designer-in-residence at North Carolina State University.
Tuesday, March 18, 7 pm
Project Projects, New York, New York, U.S.A.
Prem Krishnamurthy and Adam Michaels
Before joining forces to form Project Projects in 2004, Adam Michaels, a Minneapolis College of Art and Design graduate, was associate art director of Architecture magazine; and Prem Krishnamurthy, a Yale University graduate, had completed a Fulbright Fellowship and worked as a designer in Berlin and New York. The two forged a cool, calm, and collected aesthetic that resonates with their nonprofit and cultural sector clientele. Project Projects has emerged as a leading design studio working for such organizations as Artists Space, Creative Time, Bard Center for Curatorial Studies, Metropolis magazine, The New York Times Magazine, Princeton Architectural Press, the Van Alen Institute, and the Whitney Museum of American Art. Their work has been featured in Japan’s most progressive graphic design magazine, IDEA, as one of 100 of the world’s most interesting studio practices, and identified by the Art Directors Club of New York and Print magazine as a new design firm to watch.
Tuesday, March 25, 7 pm
Valencia, California, U.S.A.
Ed Fella returned to school to complete his undergraduate and graduate degrees in graphic design, after three decades as a successful designer practicing in the Detroit area where he grew up. He received his MFA from the Cranbrook Academy of Art in 1987 and then headed west to teach at the California Institute of the Arts. His innovative hand-rendered and manipulated typographic compositions, masterful collages, and prolific sketchbooks prefigured the resurgence of the art form and inspired countless other designers to find their hand again in the age of computer-assisted design and desktop publishing. Fella’s work has been shown worldwide and is the subject of several books, including Edward Fella: Letters on America (2000). In 1997 he received the Chrysler Award for Design Innovation and in 2007 the AIGA Medal, its highest honor.