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Sorry for the missing post this week but we spent most of the weekend building pictures out of twigs and other unconventional materials. It’s all a part of an extremely time-consuming project that will take up a lot of our summer but we can only start showing you results some time in autumn. So please enjoy this highly enigmatic in-work image for now and trust us that if we miss a post it’s not because we’re having any real fun.

re-model_city-02This year the Museum of Gdynia celebrated the Night of the Museums with a presentation of the city’s special brand of modernism. We had the pleasure of designing and illustrating an activity card for the participants. It gave us the rare joy of drawing buildings and playing with modernism-inspired typography. We showed you sketches when we were working on them but today we have the final product to share.

re-model_city-05The card is double-sided and folds into a map-like shape, with an actual map on the back. Each part presents one characteristic building and suggests tasks to work on, such as drawing, comparing facades or filling in a crossword puzzle.

re-model_city-06As you may imagine, we had a lot of fun with the buildings, and just as much with the illustrations of people in their old-fashioned outfits (Gdynia was built at the beginning of the 20th century and is rather proud of its relatively fresh legacy).

re-model_city-03 re-model_city-04These days Gdynia has a nicely modernized train station (it used to be pretty horrific a few years ago) and during renovations they discovered quite charming mosaics, which look something like this:

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Obviously, this was another part that we quite enjoyed illustrating.

re-model_city-07 re-model_city-01And the fun model of the building made of laser-engraved wooden board is courtesy of Architektura+ foundation, who were responsible for many aspects of the whole event.

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warszawa-2014-06We’re a little late with this post because we spent the weekend in Warsaw, where we went to see Pixies live (and it was pretty cool). But we also happened upon a nice little typographic exhibition in the Museum of Modern Art presenting the phenomenon of Polish vernacular typography.

warszawa-2014-06-14While not very large, the exhibition is pretty well thought out because it shows the history and ramifications of the whole phenomenon. Polish vernacular typography functioned in a different situation than e.g. American one, without the pressure of free market. As such, it was primarily informative but also pretty unconstrained. Sometimes business-owners did it themselves, but sign painter was also a job and the exhibition interestingly includes a few quotations from people who worked as such before economic transformation forced them out. It has a charming, if too small, collection of original signs from that time:

warszawa-2014-06-04 warszawa-2014-06-05 warszawa-2014-06-02 warszawa-2014-06-03From the top the signs say: “H. DÄ…browski, Tailor” | “Your Carelessness May Cause Fire” | “Tenants! Remember to Save Light and Water to Prevent Wastefulness” | “Please Don’t Smoke.”

When economy changed in the 90s, Polish street typography turned pretty terrible, which is showed in the exhibition with a collage of photographed street signs, clearly made by amateurs thanks to the sudden availability of cheap print and ready-made letters. Unfortunately, you can still see the results of this outbreak in the streets today.

And finally there is also a part of the exhibition which shows modern designs inspired by Polish vernacular. It includes not-so-interesting artsy compositions, but also more directed designs. This is, for instance, an identity designed as a diploma project for a fish stall in Ustka (a small town by the sea). The author designed the whole alphabet (called, I guess, “Fish from Ustka”), with marketing slogans playing on communist slogans.

warszawa-2014-06-06 warszawa-2014-06-08And this is another branding project for a shoe-maker. The old-fashioned job fits well the old-fashioned typographic look.

warszawa-2014-06-12 warszawa-2014-06-10And another interesting part (that we failed to photograph, apparently, but maybe you can see something in this through-the-window shot below?) was a set of re-created alphabets based on letters taken from old surviving signs, a sort of exercise in both inspiration and conservation.

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ucq-redesign_0016A while ago we had the pleasure of seeing our pixel dogs published in UC.Quarterly and this time the cats joined them. Once again we happily received an authors’ copy that let us enjoy many exciting design projects from around the world and the internet. If this sounds like something you’re into, here‘s more information.

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re-lego-cats-4-01Our London holiday (you figured out it was London, didn’t you?) was all kinds of controversial though Matisse cut-outs exhibition at Tate Modern is wonderful. Seriously, if you are in London or will be any time soon, you HAVE to see it, it’s incredible.

But now we’re back and present the last batch of Lego cats, mostly for completionist reasons.

re-lego-cats-4-06Felix prancing around sleeping Garfield.

re-lego-cats-4-08Bagheera.

re-lego-cats-4-05Hobbes (or is it Calvin? Just kidding, it’s Hobbes. It’s my favorite, by the way.)

re-lego-cats-4-07Simba and Mufasa.

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