November’s been on the busy side and the only thing we managed to watch together was Perry Mason and this is what we want to share with you.

Perry Mason (season 1)

What is it? An HBO show that reimagines the old-school lawyer Perry Mason as a bit of a bum, a private investigator and, yes, a lawyer but mostly by accident. It takes place in 1930s LA where a truly gruesome crime is committed and Perry takes it upon himself to discover the truth.

Why we love it? It’s a meticulously done show, nicely shot and oppressively dark. It’s as noir as you can take it, guys. But what we love particularly is Matthew Rhys as Perry and Tatiana Maslany in a guest role as a lady preacher. These are two actors that we loved, loooooved in The Americans and Orphan Black respectively and they don’t disappoint.

Visually speaking, we were truly impressed by the attention to detail, including design details of old ads, signs etc. This show simply looks damn good. While the story gets you down occasionally, it’s always pleasant to look at.

One more slightly political post (we consider it more socially-oriented, I guess) and then we’re back to usual.

We created this image as a comment on Polish women’s protests against the tightening of anti-abortion laws. The red lightning bolt quickly became the symbol of the movement. While it can easily bring to mind the obvious gesture, we wanted to make it a little less literal, hence the hand is spread.

If you feel you might need it for something, it’s downloadable for free from here.

Women’s rights are human rights, duh.

We spent a large part of the last week following the slowly developing but very intense presidential race in the US and when it was finally called on Saturday, we spontaneously created this illustration to celebrate its result. May Joe Biden’s presidency be good for the planet and bring back sweet boredom to political news!

In case you missed it, the number of smiley stars equals the number of states that voted blue (as of today, anyway).

This year the Museum of Gdańsk is celebrating its 50th anniversary. To emphasize this important occasion this year’s calendar that we designed presents a selection of archival photos of Gdańsk from the Museum’s collection, taken by a great photographer, Marian Murman.

The design was to be simple, with large, clear calendar and the photos in their original black-and-white colors. We used a metallic spot color for elements of the design and for the entire cover. Sometimes when you work with good photographic material it’s a pleasure to take a step back and let it speak for itself.

The proper post is in the making but in the meantime we just wanted to share the good news that two books we designed last year were shortlisted in the competition “The Most Beautiful Books of the Year” organized by the Polish Association of Book Publishers. Thanks to the jury and to the Museum of Gdańsk and the Castle Museum of Malbork for the amazing collaborations!

You can see the post about Sapientia… here and Cities… here.

Sorry for the short hiatus, guys. We’ve been discovering recently how truly horrific we can be at this whole time management thing. Seriously, they should revoke our adulthood licence. At any rate, we might not have accomplished much last month but we did re-read Pride and Prejudice. And that is precisely what we want to recommend to you today.

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

What is it? As we’re fully aware that you know, it’s Jane Austen’s romantic slash social masterpiece, a proto-rom-com and a wonderfully written novel. The reason we chose it as this month’s recommendation, in lieu of something lesser known, is that reading this book again gave us so much pleasure that modern literature doesn’t always deliver.

Why we love it? As complete saps, we mostly love it for the Lizzie–Darcy romance, which is a fully justified classic. The book sparkles with humor and, sometimes quite nasty, satire, and transports you into a different, and quite enchanting world. We also love all the multiple re-tellings and reinterpretations of the story but the original is definitely the place to start and, especially in light of those later version, proves how well it ages.

We are super happy to share that Sapientia aedificavit… book that we designed for the Castle Museum of Malbork got awarded in the Communication Arts competition and our award arrived last week (just in time for my birthday, too). We are awed to see the book among so many incredible winners. Here‘s the CA site for 2020 with winners in the Books category (but check the other categories as well, great stuff there).

This is an Eating a Humble Pie kind of recommendation because when we first watched Shame in a theater, we really failed to connect to it. And then for the longest time we quoted this movie as a prime example of something boring and empty. However, on a whim, we rewatched it recently and wow, did our perception change. We’re properly shamed (sorrynotsorry).

Shame

What is it? A 2011 movie directed by Steve McQueen, starring Michael Fassbender and Carey Mulligan, tells the story of Brandon, an outwardly successful man fighing his inner demons that manifest in sex addictions. When his sister arrives for a stay the facade of Brandon’s world begins to crumble. But it isn’t really about the plot so much.

Why we love it? Not so much for story reasons as for the artistic choices and, especially, the two stars’ performances. Fassbender, especially, is breathtaking in his humanizing and honest portrayal of Brandon. Alien as his life seems to us, his suffering appears universal.

Visually speaking, this movie uses light, camera angles and interior design in a smart way. The New York of Shame both looks good and repels the viewer with its coldness and emptiness, reflecting Brandon’s inner world (or one layer of it). And (we have to add it), Fassbender is quite uncommonly attractive, too.