Adam & Eve DDB

Celebrating 10 years of Adam & Eve DDB with Head of Photography and Illustration Daniel Moorey

Celebrating 10 years of Adam & Eve DDB with Head of Photography and Illustration Daniel Moorey

Daniel Moorey is Head of Photography and Illustration with Adam & Eve DDB. We’ve been working with him since 2007, when he was at DDB alongside Sarah Thomson, who’s now with Ogilvy, and Helen Parker, who’s with Blink Art these days. Daniel stayed fast when DDB combined forces with then up-and-coming indie agency Adam & Eve, and now that Adam & Eve DDB are turning 10, we thought we’d catch up with Daniel to reminisce a little, and get his take on what the future may hold for illustration and photography in the commercial world.

How does one become Head of Photography and Illustration?

One doesn’t is probably the clearest answer! With the growth of the digital age the earlier role of an art buyer has broadened out in many ad agencies to also incorporate project management skills, film production skills, digital skills. I’m not convinced the crossover with project management works but the role of a ‘producer’ that can be involved in different ways of making still images/events/films/websites/VR etc. is a more relevant one. Many agencies have assistant producers which is a great way to learn your trade or even which bits of producing you enjoy most. The best agencies, though, retain expertise in each of the different disciplines. While on some jobs a producer needs to work in different media, it takes a long time to build up the knowledge that a traditional art buyer had.

Was DDB your first job in the role?

No I worked at AMV BBDO for ten years before ddb and Adam & Eve DDB, another great agency that produces great work.

Do you remember the first job you worked on with Breed?

Yes! It was a fantastic illustration campaign for VW called Incredible but True. We had an incredible fact for each ad and then used a different artist for each ad to illustrate the fact. The design template meant you knew it was all part of the same campaign even though there were about 20 different illustration styles used. It’s something Dave Dye used most memorably with his Merrydown Cider campaign, one of my all-time favourites. For VW Neal Murren drew two foxes waiting for a chicken to drop from the sky to the line ‘the longest recorded flight of a chicken is 18 seconds’. Genius stuff. (Shown below)

How do you decide which artist is right for a brief?

It’s a combination of the visual world the client already inhabits, the idea, and sometimes the design world needed. The joy of illustration compared to photography is that you can work with anyone anywhere in the world and you don’t need to worry so much about personalities and previous experience. As long as the illustrator isn’t a complete pain it’s all much more controllable than a shoot. Using a really distinctive style for the first time on a big campaign can be a nice thing to aim for.

You worked with Neal Murren on Financial Times and Steven Wilson on Harvey Nicks among others. Do you have any particular memories of working with Breed artists?

Neal on the FT was interesting because he has a wonderfully distinctive style but he thought the best solution for the ad was to do it in CG and he was right! Steven is always great to work with and is a thoroughly nice man. He worked on a Harvey Nichols ad in the style of a computer game that won a few awards and he also designed graphics for the iconic VW Beetle as an option at point of sale, so I still occasionally spot them around and about.

Has your role changed over the years?

Yes, a lot! Not so much when I worked as an art buyer and then running a team of art buyers. More so when I started also working in live action film, animation and more tech-based projects involving projection mapping or lidar scanning. I like learning new things and the digital era has thrown up a lot of new things to learn. The key thing for me is that projects have a good idea at their core, I’m lucky to work on a lot of great stills work at Adam & Eve DDB and when there is a crossover into film the good idea often follows through. A good example of this is the Marmite Summer of Love/Summer of Hate stills campaign that we worked on with Jim Stoten – we also did an animation of a Love Kitten and a Hate Monster singing at each other in the same style as the stills!

What pieces really stand out for you from your time with Adam & Eve DDB?

There’s been a lot of great work that I have touched on already but Marmite and Financial Times have some good history. Harvey Nichols though is probably the best advertising account I will work on in my career and my favourite ad is probably last year’s still image and film celebrating the 100-year anniversary of Vogue with a wonderful 100-year-old lady called Bo. When our client saw the film they cried and you can’t ask for more than that.

Do you notice distinct trends in what clients are looking for, or does each client have their own set preferences?

Not so much in illustration at the moment, I’d say. There is such a broad range of styles out there compared to when I first started and, interestingly, not many styles have died away. New styles have just been added to the mix. There are few brands that have a visual history predominantly using illustration, so often there is an element of flexibility in who is used. What is sometimes tricky is that a client’s relationship to illustration can be pretty minimal and they can find it hard to explain why they like or dislike something, which can at times take a while to get to the bottom of.

What do you think the future holds for illustration and photography in advertising?

More film. And more practitioners making film a core part of their practice alongside stills. That’s not to say everyone needs to do film, but the odd gif is probably a good idea at the least.

What kind of art do you put on your own walls at home?

Nothing to do with my work! Huge large format landscape photographs, paintings from friends, maps. One of my favourite things is a small embroidered landscape that I bought in the Northern Irish town of Derry that was made in 1972 which was at the height of the troubles and Bloody Sunday. The idea of someone working on an idealised landscape at a time of violent political conflict always intrigues me. Since the work in my day job is very temporal I like to have things at home that have a sense of history. 

Mr & Mrs Smith

Breed founder Olivia Triggs recently took a break in the Lake District, staying at the Malabar b&b at Garths Farm near Sedbergh. It’s part of the boutique portfolio of Mr & Mrs Smith, who had asked Olivia to review it for their site

We recommend a break in Sedbergh

Breed founder Olivia Triggs recently took a break in the Lake District, staying at The Malabar b&b at Garths Farm near Sedbergh. It’s part of the boutique portfolio of Mr & Mrs Smith, who had asked Olivia to review it for their site. If you’re thinking of spending some time in the area, she couldn’t recommend the Malabar more highly.

In fact, you can read her full review and find out more about the Malabar by clicking here.

And you can find plenty of other beautiful places to stay by going to mrandmrssmith.com

www.themalabar.co.uk

Photos of Howgill Fells.

Stack

Steve Watson set up Stack after spotting a gap in the market. A lot of people don’t live near a great magazine shop, so it’s difficult for them to find something really good to read. Stack acts as a filter, selecting the best independent magazines and delivering them direct to your door. It was started nine years ago, in December 2008. We spoke to Steve to find out more.

 
What is your background?

Before I went full-time on Stack I was editorial director at Human After All, where I helped to create magazines and other editorial things for corporate clients including Google, PlayStation and the World Economic Forum. 

When did this idea come to you?

I discovered independent magazines in the early 2000s and fell in love with these beautiful, extraordinary titles, but I realised that most of my friends had never even heard about them. I assumed that was just down to the magazines not being able to pay for advertising, but one day I was speaking with Danny Miller, the publisher of Little White Lies (I started writing for them soon after they started), and he told me the real problem is distribution – it’s still a real struggle for independents to get their magazines in front of the right readers. I started thinking about how you could make it easier for publishers and readers to discover each other, and Stack launched at the end of 2008. 

Who is in your team?

Grace is our editor – she runs the blog and social media channels and makes sure that there’s always an interesting new magazine for us to be talking about. My background is in content marketing, and that’s the way we’ve promoted Stack from the beginning. These days my contribution is limited to hosting the Stack podcast and making occasional video reviews, but there’s always so much other stuff to do!

And Vicky is our subscriptions manager – we used to use a subscriptions agency but they just couldn’t give the level of service I wanted, so these days all subscriptions management and customer service is done in-house. Vicky is basically the nicest person I know, and she’s incredibly organised and also loves independent magazines, so she’s the perfect person to speak to our subscribers if they need to contact us.

Can you give us four reasons why print is still so popular and why at times it beats digital design.

I love the way that a print magazine can be completely absorbing – your breathing slows down, you lose yourself in the page and give it your complete attention. I read a huge amount on my phone and computer, but I tend to read quickly and skim for the important bits, whereas print encourages me to take my time. Also, the double page spread is a pretty amazing invention – you can take in the whole expanse, and almost simultaneously focus on the smallest detail, which means a good designer can lead your eye around the page while also leaving you free to find your own way. That control and pacing is really important to the whole reading experience.

What do you look for in a great magazine? 

All the magazines we send out on Stack need to be built on a clear and original idea. We’re living in an age of content excess – there’s so much stuff out there to read, watch, listen to or play, often for free, that there’s just no point in publishing anything if it doesn’t help readers to see the world in a new light. That could mean a really serious piece of journalism or a silly little aside, but it has to be made by somebody who really cares about contributing something new and interesting, rather than repeating what they’ve already seen elsewhere.

What would you say were the most inspiring magazines of 2017?

I really enjoyed a magazine from New York called Good Trouble. It’s a large format newspaper dedicated to protest and what it calls “good trouble, necessary trouble”. It carries a powerful message but also has a lovely lightness of touch – really impressive stuff.

Which magazines have had the best reaction from your readers?

There isn’t really one that stands out from the rest. That sounds like I’m sitting on the fence but its true! I think it’s because our subscribers are so varied – they are by definition a group of people who want to be surprised by something from outside the mainstream, so my job is to keep on searching out the best stuff and sending it their way. 

The end of this year will see your 10 year anniversary – are you doing anything special?

Yes! We’re working on a rebrand and relaunch at the moment. It’s all still early days, but it’s very exciting. And a bit terrifying.

And finally, does this business ever make you feel like creating your own publication?

Ha! I do have a couple of ideas for magazines I’d like to make. Maybe one day…

 

Christmas 2017

Breed Christmas 2017

Breed’s annual round robin

It’s that time again, and we’re back with the second Breed round robin, for you to read over a gently-warmed mince pie and mulled wine. No tales of the triumphs and tribulations of obscure family members, though. We’re here to remind you of a few highlights of all that our artists, illustrators, photographers and film-makers got up to over the course of 2017. And it is just a taste of what turned out to be a very busy year.

January

We started the year by welcoming Petra Börner to our ranks. Working in finely-detailed cut paper although rapidly expanding her skills to working in ceramics, Petra soon started making an impact and headed off on her own tour of Europe. But more of that later.

Breed also made their way to San Francisco for Connections, a series of trade shows for artists and their representatives, put on by Le Book, the annual creative industry directory.

February

Neal Murren popped up this month with an extraordinary personal piece called ’The Letter D’. It had the look of an intricately detailed ancient map. Whether it leads to treasure or should simply be treasured is for the beholder to decide.

Buenos Aires-born Paula Castro was commissioned to create a guide to Madrid for annual contemporary art fair ARCOMadrid, running across 200 galleries in the Spanish capital. This year the fair was showcasing Argentinian art, with 12 galleries from Buenos Aires taking part.

March

March marked our 10th birthday, a fact we celebrated in some style at Bistrotheque in east London, its walls adorned with specially created 10th birthday artworks. A good time was had by everyone, though with dignity at all times, of course.

At the end of the month, Steven Wilson was involved with She Lights Up the Night – an initiative which saw contemporary art being auctioned in aid of Refuge, a charity providing support for women and children affected by domestic violence. Andy ended up making his piece using Corian®, a material more normally used for kitchen work surfaces.

April

As spring got underway, Danny Sangra decided it was safe to back into the waters of film-making, and produced, as well as wrote and directed, ‘Shark!’, for Miu Miu and mytheresa.com. It tells the story of two young women at a swimming pool, and how one of them overcomes an understandable fear of the water: dannysangra.com

Andy Gilmore has been producing new work constantly throughout the year, sometimes striking out in new directions. This month saw a series called ‘Rays’ in characteristic geometric style, followed by ‘Golden Section’ the following month. But then, he broke off to create some new images of animals and birds using coloured pens and pencils.

May

Anna Bu Kliewer turned up this month in Boys by Girls, illustrating three poems by Christopher Raley. a magazine. Boys by Girls is a magazine which offers female artists the chance to explore the male form through fashion, art and documentary.

June

Craig & Karl turned up at a petrol station in White City as summer began. They’d transformed an old closed station in Wood Lane, just by the BBC’s old home Broadcasting House, into a psychedelic spectacular of brightly coloured lines and chevrons. It was a piece called ‘HERE AFTER’, the first stage of a transformation of the building into a pop-up venue, as part of an £8 billion regeneration of the area.

July

James Joyce played Glastonbury this year, or at least some of his posters did, appearing in the Shangri-La area. They bore messages relating to environmental and economic activism, as you might expect at Glasto. James also made an appearance at the Vauxhall Art Car Boot Fair this month.

August

Matt Blease also started exploring a new medium for his work this month – sweets, specifically Mentos. He worked with ad agency BBH on a continuing campaign called ‘A nicer way to say hello’, that saw him adding a variety of greetings to Mentos as illustrations and messages which you could use as an ice breaker to make new friends.

September

James Joyce enjoyed the experience of the Vauxhall Art Car Boot Fair in July so much, that he went along to the one in Folkestone this month, as well.

Petra Börner, meanwhile, returned from her long trip through Europe this month, having spent time in Italy, Denmark and France and taking the time wandering their galleries seeking inspiration for new works to come.

And, in case you don’t know what a kass-kass is, Paula Castro included an illustration of this African instrument alongside others for a project with Barcelona-based design studio Todojunto.

October

Danny Sangra’s new relationship with Burberry really took off this month. He’d already reworked some of their old ads in his own style on social media, established Danny’s World on their app, and began to plan a series of live events in Burberry flagship stores around the globe that would take him into December.

November

Cat Garcia’s exhibition ‘Quarterly’ ran this month at Leica Studio Mayfair. The photos Cat selected for the exhibition showed the changes in nature, and the people who work closely with nature, through the seasons of the year.

Meanwhile, Natasha Law got involved with the yachting set, illustrating an article offering slightly tongue-in-cheek advice on buying a new boat for the US edition of Boat International.

December

Kate Moross consolidated her ongoing relationship with Kiehl’s Since 1851 by creating exclusive packaging for Kiehl’s Holiday Season range. Even more exciting, she produced a second range for Christmas featuring Mickey Mouse, in an unprecedented joint venture with Disney. In recent weeks, Kate has been involved in live events in Kiehl’s Since 1851 stores in Tokyo and London to promote the range.

We were also pleased to welcome Devon resident Phillippa Mills to our ranks this year. And you’ll be seeing more of her work at the start of the New Year .

We’ve been pretty busy at Breed HQ, too. We’re just back from Le Book Amsterdam, the follow-up to the creative gathering we started the year with, in San Francisco, and another one that took place in Milan later in the year. I know, tough life.

In closing, we would all like to wish you all a very happy Christmas, and look forward to sharing all sorts of colour, magic, sketches and surprises with you in 2018.

Olivia and all at Breed

(Image by Steven Wilson)

@designmuseum

Breed @designmuseum on 19 December

On 19 December, Breed has the great honour of taking over the Design Museum’s Instagram account for the day. In a series of posts, we’ll be sharing just some of the work and events of this, our 10th birthday year, including… well, you’ll have to check up to see.

Breed @designmuseum on 19 December

On 19 December, Breed has the great honour of taking over the Design Museum’s Instagram account for the day. In a series of posts, we’ll be sharing just some of the work and events of this, our 10th birthday year, including… well, you’ll have to check up to see.

 

First Editions Re-Covered in aid of House of Illustration

This December, Sotheby’s London will be auctioning 33 classic books, each of them with an original dust-jacket created by a renowned artist. Artists taking part in First Editions Re-Covered include Maggi Hambling, Sir Quentin Blake, Raymond Pettibon and Peter Blake.

First Editions Re-Covered in aid of House of Illustration

This December, Sotheby’s London will be auctioning 33 classic books, each of them with an original dust-jacket created by a renowned artist. Artists taking part in First Editions Re-Covered include Maggi Hambling, Sir Quentin Blake, Raymond Pettibon and Peter Blake.

They’re being sold to raise funds for House of Illustration, which is a registered charity working with schools throughout London to help inspire creativity in young people regardless of barriers like language, special educational needs or literacy. They are also the world’s only public gallery devoted purely to illustration and the graphic arts, holding regular talks and exhibitions.

House of Illustration was founded by Quentin Blake, one of the artists creating an exclusive first edition for the auction. Each participating artist was asked to pick a book they felt had a strong personal connection, and then create their own dust-jacket or artwork for it. Peter Blake chose ‘Alice Through the Looking Glass’, while soon-to-be ex-Doctor Who and sweary political adviser actor Peter Capaldi chose Franz Kafka’s ‘Metamorphosis’ because he found ‘the story so powerful, the imagery unforgettable, and the sadness at its heart completely human’. And fashion artist David Downton chose Dr No by Ian Fleming ‘not for the book, but for the chance to draw Ursula Andress, my idol since I was a teenager.” 

Quentin Blake has also included a very rare piece of original artwork he created for Beatrice Potter’s ‘The Tale of Kitty-in-Boots’ in the auction.

Colin MacKenzie, Director of House of Illustration has been amazed by the support the charity has received from the artistic community: “We’ve been overwhelmed by the incredible generosity of such an amazing collection of artists and it’s been particularly fascinating to see the books they’ve chosen as there’s a story behind each one.”

You can find out about some of those stories for yourself as all the works will be on show at Sotheby’s London in New Bond Street from 8-11 December 2017, And if you fancy owning a unique piece of art by one of the 31 artists involved, the auction itself will take place on the evening of 11 December.

Gilbert and George look to their legacy

Gilbert and George look to their legacy

Gilbert and George look to their legacy

For over 50 years, Gilbert and George have been part of the local scenery around Brick Lane. Since purchasing their original Huguenot house in Fournier Street as a barely liveable wreck in 1973 for £22,000, they have carefully restored it and expanded into adjacent properties, which also contain their studio. And for many years they had their suits made locally, always had breakfast at the same Spitalfields café, and still make their way a few miles up the road to the same Dalston restaurant every evening to eat.

They rarely leave the area, seeing it as almost the world in miniature. And so, as they get older, it should come as no surprise that they’re looking to maintain their presence in the area after their passing. To that end, their foundation has recently bought a property next to The Pride of Spitalfields pub, in Heneage Street just off Brick Lane. The property is an old 18th Century brewery, set in gardens, and is being converted by Gilbert’s nephew, who happens to be an architect, into a 3,000 square foot space to house their artworks in perpetuity. Gilbert and George say they have done this partly because, even after 50 years, they still don’t feel major galleries like the Tate are comfortable showing their work.

So, Gilbert and George look set to live on in Spitalfields into perpetuity. And, if you don’t want to wait until the new space is finished to see some of their work, their current show Gilbert & George: The Beard Pictures And Their Fuckosophy is on at White Cube Bermondsey until 28 January 2018

Browns East

James Joyce and Anna Bu Kliewer in viewing at Browns East

We recently mentioned how the leading West End fashion retailer Browns has recently opened a new east London store in Shoreditch, Browns East. And that as well as fashion, the store offers artworks by a number of leading edge artists including James Joyce and Anna Bu Kliewer.

The store itself launched a few weeks ago, but to highlight the art that makes up a significant part of the store experience, they held an ‘art night’ this week. The night was partly a celebration of Andy Leek’s pop-up in the store. Even if you don’t know his name, you may have seen Andy’s work – notes to strangers, handwritten posters and stickers – they’ve been appearing all over the place in recent months. But it was also a viewing for all the art on display at Browns East.

And all that art is for sale, so if you fancy owning a piece by James, Anna, or numerous other artists including Rob Wyn Yates, Lauren Baker, Juno Calypso and Rebecca Louise Law just drop by.

You can find Browns East in Club Row, Shoreditch.

 

 

Browns

James Joyce and Anna Bu Kliewer now for sale in Browns East

James Joyce and Anna Bu Kliewer now for sale in Browns East

Browns, the iconic fashion store long based in South Molton Street, has just opened a new store Browns East in Club Row, Shoreditch. And, in among the high fashion items, it’s also offering artwork by some of today’s most interesting and desirable artists, including James Joyce and Anna Bu Kliewer. Their pieces are for sale in company with names like Polly Morgan, Rob Wyn Yates, Jemma Appleby, Lauren Baker, Stephanie Burnley, Juno Calypso, Maja Daniels, Sue Williams, Rebecca Louise Law and Nigel O’Niel.

Browns was founded in 1970 when Joan and Sidney Burnstein bought a Georgian townhouse in South Molton Street and opened a small boutique. In short order, they acquired the adjoining townhouses and expanded their store. Over the years they brought designers like Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren and Armani to London for the first time, as well as discovering John Galliano and Alexander McQueen. In more recent years, Browns has been acquired by forward-looking online fashion group Farfetch.

And now they’re open in East London. Pop along to have a look.

 

P&S

Pitch & Sync’s 10th birthday celebrations in Amsterdam went off very well. As you can see from the photos, Steven Wilson’s prepared piano provided the music, while MASA’s, Danny Sangra’s, Steve Wilson’s, James Joyce’s and Andy Gilmore’s musically-themed illustrations were on the walls of the venue.

Pitch & Sync party in Amsterdam

Pitch & Sync’s 10th birthday celebrations in Amsterdam went off very well. As you can see from the photos, Steven Wilson’s prepared piano provided the music, while MASA’s, Danny Sangra’s, Steve Wilson’s, James Joyce’s and Andy Gilmore’s musically-themed illustrations were on the walls of the venue.

The party also acted as a private view for an exhibition of the pieces, which will run at Pitch & Sync’s new home at S.A.I. studios for the next month.

If you’re in the ‘Dam wander along to take a look. The studio is at Haarlemmerdijk 138 HS,1013 JJ Amsterdam.

The ten octave piano went down well, an idea cooked up between Michael Aneto of SAI and P&S. Built by Tim Crombie with design by Breed’s very own Steven Wilson.

Elephant

If you’re a reader of arts and culture magazine Elephant, you may have spotted us in the most recent issue – 32. We turned up in a full-page piece designed by James Joyce, listing all of our artists.

Pick up an Elephant

If you’re a reader of arts and culture magazine Elephant, you may have spotted us in the most recent issue – 32. We turned up in a full-page piece designed by James Joyce, listing all of our artists.

The issue ties in with Frieze London, an arts fair with work available to buy from over 1,000 artists and 160 of the world’s leading galleries. The fair takes place on 5-8 October in Regent’s Park. Elephant is still for sale at all good newsagents. In the meantime, you can see the James’ work here.

Rankin – British Heart Foundation

Rankin’s creative agency The Full Service has teamed up with the British Heart Foundation to raise money for the fight against heart disease.

Natasha Law and James Joyce show some heart

Rankin’s creative agency The Full Service has teamed up with the British Heart Foundation to raise money for the fight against heart disease. They had a simple idea for how they could go about this. Every day people happily tap the heart icon on Instagram and Twitter to show their love and appreciation. What about if all those people could turn that love and appreciation into something more?

That’s the basis for the ‘A HEART for a HEART’ campaign – creating a social media moment to get everyone thinking about their own and other people’s hearts. All they want is for people to draw a heart – whether pen on paper, scratching in the sand with a stick or a finger in the team on a bathroom mirror, take a photo and post it ‘#aheartforaheart’ on World Heart Day, which is 29 September.

And they commissioned a number of artists to get the ball rolling, including from Breed Natasha Law and James Joyce, whose contributions you can see here.

To quote Rankin: “Every three minutes someone is lost to heart and circulatory disease in the UK, so we’re hugely grateful to all these amazing artists for getting involved. The heart is the universal symbol. It can be romantic, it can be broken, it can be used on t-shirts to profess a love for a city. And, in recent years, it is synonymous with social media. The team and I wanted to make that mean something. And what better way than to raise awareness for the amazing work that British Heart Foundation do. We can all be guilty of taking it for granted that our bodies keep working. “A HEART for a HEART” is a just a little moment to recognise and salute it.”

 

Clock in at the Factory at Tate Modern

On 28 September 2017, Clare Twomey’s installation FACTORY: the seen and the unseen will open at Tate Modern. A fully functional ceramics factory will occupy the whole of Tate Exchange on Level 5 of Tate Modern’s Blavatnik Building, with 30 metres of work space, eight tonnes of clay, a wall of drying racks, and over 2,000 fired clay objects.

On 28 September 2017, Clare Twomey’s installation FACTORY: the seen and the unseen will open at Tate Modern. A fully functional ceramics factory will occupy the whole of Tate Exchange on Level 5 of Tate Modern’s Blavatnik Building, with 30 metres of work space, eight tonnes of clay, a wall of drying racks, and over 2,000 fired clay objects.

This is a working factory, too, and you can be one of the workers, helping to mould or cast teapots, jugs and flowers, during its first week of operation. You will have to clock in alongside other members of the public, and will then the skills of using clay while working on the production line. You can the exchange the objects you’ve made with other items produced on the line.

During the second week, the production line will stop, and visitors will be able to enter a soundscape of factory noises, and join tours discussing the communities that formed around collective labour.

FACTORY will launch the second year of Tate Exchange, which, over the next year, will be focussing on the theme of production. Clare Twomey has been working with Dudson of Stoke-on-Trent for six months to bring the project to fruition.

Continuing her theme, there will also be a lace panel woven by Clare on the last working Leavers loom in the UK hanging above the FACTORY entrance, to symbolise the relationship between human and machine.

This is far from Clare’s first participatory work. Currently, at the Brontë Parsonage Museum in Haworth she’s inviting visitors to copy a single line from ‘Wuthering Heights’, with the intention of creating a completely handwritten copy of the full book to exhibit during Emily Brontë’s bicentenary year in 2018. The original manuscript of her book is lost.

So, if you fancy helping to create art, in either ceramic or book form, we urge you to head to either or both of these exhibitions and get involved.

Find out more about FACTORY: the seen and the unseen at tate.org.uk/visit/tate-modern/tate-exchange

And about the Brontë event at bronte.org.uk/

 

 

Pitch & Sync

Breed and Pitch & Sync celebrate 10 years

Double double figures

Breed and Pitch & Sync celebrate 10 years

As you know, Breed celebrated its 10th birthday this year. And it turns out our brothers and sisters in another medium, Pitch & Sync, are also celebrating their 10th this year. And to celebrate, we’re getting together for an exhibition in Amsterdam.

Sound and vision in perfect harmony

Pitch & Sync put music to work, adding sounds to brands – everything from curating existing music and clearing rights, to creating new compositions, sound design and sonic branding.

We’ve partnered with them before, our visuals complementing their sounds, and we have plans for something similar for this exhibition.

You hum it, we’ll draw it

Already, a number of our artists, including MASA, Danny Sangra and Steve Wilson, are working on pieces built around twin song titles – each of them acting as counterpoint to the other. You can see James Joyce’s piece opposite, merging 1959’s Woo Hoo’ by The Rock-A-Teens with 1961’s ‘Boo Hoo’ by Marvin Rainwater, and here’s a taster of some of the combinations other artists are working on:

Steven Wilson is mashing up the Rolling Stones’ ‘Paint It, Black’ with Grandmaster Flash’s ‘White Lines’.

Danny Sangra‘s piece is juxtaposing lines from Wu-Tang and Jay-Z

MASA, meanwhile, is putting together Can’s I Want More’ with Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell’s ‘You’re All I Need’.

Andy Gilmore is working with two of his favourite albums, both by David Axelrod, and based on works by William Blake, ‘Songs of Experience’ and ‘Songs of innocence’.

Help us prepare our 10-octave piano

Steve Wilson also has something else lined up – and you may be able to help. To mark those ten years, he’s helping to design the world’s first 10-octave prepared piano. What’s a prepared piano? Many years ago, composer John Cage wanted to use a piano to make a range of not necessarily piano-like percussive sounds. He achieved this by inserting a variety of objects between or on the strings. Like this one: youtube.com

Steve would like to hear your ideas for methods to ‘prepare’ his piano’s hammers to change its sound. He’ll incorporate some of your ideas into the design. How he’ll turn the normal seven and a bit octaves of a standard piano into ten is again something you’ll have to come along and discover for yourself.

Music to your eyes

The exhibition runs for one month, during the ADE/Amsterdam Dance Event, and will kick off with a private view on 28 September, at Pitch and Sync’s new home in Amsterdam, S.A.I. studios.

The address is:

Haarlemmerdijk 138 HS
1013 JJ Amsterdam

See you there.

 

Stephen Jenkins

We talked to Stephen Jenkins about his career, his time at The Guardian (where we at Breed were introduced to him), right up to his current position at PVH and their major brands.

A quick chat with Stephen Jenkins

We talked to Stephen Jenkins about his career, his time at The Guardian (where we at Breed were introduced to him), right up to his current position at Tommy Hilfiger.

Tell us a little about your career trajectory. How did you get from a being an MA student at Central Saint Martins to senior art director at Tommy Hilfiger and Calvin Klein?

I returned to university to study an MA at CSM as I wanted to further develop, as I was unimpressed and uninspired by my degree course. Studying a Communication Design MA exposed me to graphics, illustration and digital design, which was the first time I realised you could work in a variety of different media within the same role. This facilitated my love of magazines and I was lucky enough to intern at Wagadon (publisher of The Face and Arena) towards the end of my MA. After that I worked at Dazed and Confused and Vogue. Over the coming years I worked as a freelance art director for numerous publications and brands including GQ, Harper’s Bazaar, Wallpaper, Mr Porter, Matches Fashion, The Guardian, Mark Porter Associates and now at PVH as a senior art director.

Was becoming an art director always the plan?

The concept of being an art director was always interesting from my experience of working at fashion magazines. But it’s very different to working within an advertising agency. I’m much more interested in the concept of working with people than directing, although there are now so many voices in the room during the creative process that it’s important to direct the project as much as the concepts.

How did you first come across Breed?

I’d always been a fan of Kate Moross and James Joyce was a friend of a friend, so Breed was a natural discovery. I’ve also known Matt Blease for a while, so it proves we have some chemistry!

How much of the work you commission comes out of agencies?

Unfortunately, I’m commissioning less and less artwork due to the demand of working in fashion and the majority of this work being photographic. The bi-annual runway shows are a great way to create branded content for PVH but I’m noticing more and more illustrated content being used by the big fashion houses in a variety of innovative ways.

How would you otherwise scout artists to collaborate with?

Social media is by far the easiest way to find new talent, although finding it can be tricky. The shrinking publications and their budgets are making it harder to find exciting examples in print, which is frustrating as this is where artists can be their most experimental. But there are some new independent publications that are promoting new artists.

You worked at the Guardian for eight years. Are there any particularly memorable TV Guide covers from those eight years?

I was lucky enough to work with a great editor who understood the power of creating strong, graphic covers that gave a clear identity to a simple A5 magazine. I worked on multiple redesigns, launches and projects within The Guardian but The Guide was a favourite magazine to embrace the new developments in illustration and typography, and I miss the exciting freedom of finding talented artists to collaborate with. I enjoyed promoting the talent just as much as the commissions.

You’ve worked with several Breed artists for TV Guide covers, namely Kate Moross, James Joyce and Steven Wilson. What was it about their work that stood out? 

What I liked most about the Breed artists was their direct, modern approach. I prefer strong, graphic imagery that can communicate as quickly as possible. I also thought that Breed felt more than a collection of illustrators – they were part illustration, part artist and part agency.

What qualities do you look for when commissioning artists?

It’s important that artists are flexible in their approach and delivery as the brief is in constant flux. Working together to achieve a successful project is important to create something unique and mutually beneficial whilst answering the brief and hopefully pushing the overall direction.

You must have a huge number of artists pitching work to you. Do you have any advice for artists when approaching art directors?

Be direct – make contact.

Stand out from the crowd.

Know your audience.

Don’t chase, hassle or irritate.

Do something different.

Keep it simple!

Any parting words of wisdom for creatives aspiring to work with high-profile brands and publications? 

Illustration has changed so much over the years and is now much more accessible for big brands. Embrace becoming your own brand and promote yourself as a fully functioning agency being able to deliver a full 360 approach to commissions. Don’t restrict your reach, and have fun!

Cover credits:

Matt Blease, Kate Moross x 2, Mark Ward, Jackdaw and Sophie Henson

Sam Walton on Hole & Corner and the Port Eliot Festival

Sam Walton on Hole & Corner and the Port Eliot Festival

Hole & Corner is a quarterly journal which describes itself as ‘celebrating craft, beauty, passion and skill’. Sam’s background is in working as an art director and designer in publishing and for such magazines as Vogue and World of Interiors. In recent years, Sam has got Hole & Corner involved with the Port Eliot Festival in Cornwall, where they host a makers’ tent, including talks, workshops and demonstrations with some of the finest craftspeople in the country. We asked Sam about Hole & Corner and how he got involved with the festival.

What is the ethos behind Hole & Corner?

I launched Hole & Corner to celebrate creativity and craft, especially those who live life on their own terms, and follow their passion.

We’re interested in developing the idea of a Hole & Corner life – an authentic lifestyle, where we’re more conscientious about our purchases, and understand the provenance and stories behind the things we buy.

What does the name refer to?

‘Hole-and-Corner: adj, secret: describing a place or a life lived away from the mainstream’.

What drew you towards craftsmanship and the decision to start Hole & Corner?

A combination of elements really, I had been working on a number of commercial projects focusing on brands’ heritage and craftsmanship, which was predominantly aimed at the Chinese market. I was also quite far down the food provenance road, regularly visiting food markets and meeting producers, and could see this developing into other aspects of our lifestyle. And finally, and perhaps most influential, was my move out of the city to a village in Dorset. I think slowing things down a little and taking the time to listen to people, it brought a humility, which perhaps I had lacked in the city. 

Do you feel genuine craftsmanship is making a real comeback?

For sure, but it’s also about finding balance in our lives. Digital life has brought us many amazing things, but no doubt there is a great need to connect face-to-face, learn new skills and relax away from the screen. I think more and more people will discover new passions which may bring career changes – I’ve met many talented makers in the last four years who have done just that.

Do you see yourself as a craftsman?

Well I certainly think my years as an art director and designer of magazines is my craft, sadly the word craft has been tarnished in recent years by ‘crafting’, but I feel through H&C we try to bring that focus back to learning and developing one’s craft. But if you mean, making or creating something by hand – not really, I’m not terribly patient!

How did you meet Cathy St Germans?

Through a mutual friend, Derek. He’s been involved with the planning of the festival for many years. I happened to bump into Derek in Soho shortly after we published issue 01. He was heading off to Cornwall the next morning and took an issue along to show to Cathy and the team. That started things, I guess.

Whose idea was it to become involved with the Port Eliot Festival?

I produced a document before I launched the magazine which outlined the activity I hoped to develop, the magazine, films, selling products and hosting events. I had actually reappropriated an illustration my father had drawn of a tent at Latitude festival many years ago. I added the Hole & Corner logo on the outside and used this visual in the document – it’s actually quite uncanny how similar it looks to our Port Eliot set up.

Had you been to the festival before your involvement?

I had heard good things from friends in the fashion industry, but until Cathy invited me along I hadn’t visited. It’s a beautiful place and an amazing weekend.

Are you much of a festival-goer?

Yes, I guess I am. My family are big festival-goers – Mum and Dad have been at Glastonbury for the last 25 years. Not much of a camper though – I cope.

What do you have lined up for this year’s makers’ tent?

We have a great line up this year, lots of new talent and workshops planned. Julia Jarvis from our office has been working tirelessly for some months now, meeting and vetting new makers. We’ll be printing, carving, forging, throwing pots, sewing and much more.

Will you be taking any of this year’s makers’ tent workshops?

I rarely find the time to sit down. It’s hard to focus enough to make it worthwhile – I enjoy seeing everyone else getting stuck in, though. I might take the spoon carving kit I was kindly gifted by my friend Robin Wood. Perhaps I’ll make some progress on a spoon or two after hours.

What do you have lined up for future editions of Hole & Corner?

We have the themes fixed for the next four issues. Next up is Material out mid-September, in time for LDF – for which we’ve curated the British Craft Pavilion at the Truman Brewery. It’s shaping up nicely, I’ll finish it off during August.

A selection of images from last year’s festival, can be seen here.

Port Eliot is from the 27th July until the 30th July 2017. More information at Port Eliot.

Breed turns 10 at Bistrotheque

Last Thursday was our 10th birthday, and we had a party to celebrate

Last Thursday was our 10th birthday, and we had a party to celebrate. It was held in Bistrotheque, its walls decorated with the works of our artists, celebrating those ten years.

If you didn’t make it, a few photos below taken on the night. And if you did, it was good to see you. Thanks for coming.

Breed turns 10

An artists’ interpretation of our 10th birthday

An artists’ interpretation of our 10th birthday

I know, we don’t look a day over 8, but it’s true – Breed turns 10 this year. We had a party last week to prove it, but we haven’t quite finished the celebrations yet. To really make it special, we decided to mark the milestone with the help of our brilliant artists – by asking them to interpret us hitting double figures in their own individual ways.

And you can see the results here, with beautiful works by Steven Wilson, Anna Bu Kliewer, Craig & Karl, Danny Sangra, James Joyce, MASA, Matt Blease, Natasha Law, Paula Castro, Andy Gilmore and Kate Moross.

Here’s to the next 10.

You can read more on our milestone below…

Its Nice That

Digital Arts

Zetteler

 

G . F Smith

James Joyce, Natasha Law, Craig & Karl, Anna Bu Kliewer and photographer Cat Garcia have all taken part in G . F Smith Papers’ Worlds Favourite Colour project. Find out more on the Zetteler link below.

Following on from our last G . F Smith mention on this…

This time James Joyce, Natasha Law, Craig & Karl, Anna Bu Kliewer and photographer Cat Garcia have all taken part in G . F Smith Papers’ Worlds Favourite Colour project.

Find out more on the Zetteler link below.

G . F Smith

San Francisco

Breed. San Francisco

Earlier in February we flew to the west coast, to spend a week in the city of San Francisco. And what a city it is.

Once we got there, and thanks to Airbnb, we found ourselves perfectly located on Divisadero Street in Nopa, right across the road from Bi-Rite, a great deli, so long as you’re okay with spending $80 on some cheese, chocolate and a good bottle of red. I’m not sure I was.

First though, on arrival we had to contend with turmoil as we turned up just as new announcements on who was and was not allowed into the US seemed to be being made every few hours. Protesters were gathering at the airport as we came through immigration, and at least gave us the sense of a city united against all that was going on.

Anyway, once suitably sated at the deli, we were more than ready for a week of making new connections, finding inspiration, and enjoying the change of scenery from London.

We started by ticking off a few of the obligatory tourist spots. We got the boat over to Alcatraz, tried the food at the weekend farmer’s market at the Ferry Building (the Primavera Mexican stall was our favourite, though anything Mexican got our vote), wandered the piers, flicked through old vinyl at Jack’s Record Cellar on Scott Street, roamed the Mission District, and saw the Golden Gate Bridge from every angle. Sun, seals and ‘Sitting on the Dock of the Bay’ in Sausalito.

Then we explored a little more off the well-worn track. We went to a wine-tasting at the Francis Ford Coppola Winery, where I made a mental note to re-watch Sofia Coppola’s Somewhere after reading up on the Coppola family. Oh, and I recommend the Archimedes Cabernet Sauvignon 2013. And another wine-tasting, this time organic wine, at Preston Farm and Winery, where we also enjoyed farm-grown olives, home-made bread and cheese (thanks Michael & Lucy). Before anyone gets the impression that this was really a wine tour, I should mention other highlights included Ocean and Java Beach, the Redwoods at Muir Woods, and heading off to Sonoma Valley, which is, er, wine country.

With that bit of getting our bearings out of the way, it was down to business. We were in San Francisco to attend Le Book Connections West Coast. By our calculation, this is the 17th time we’ve exhibited with Connections since 2007, so we’re real veterans at this point. This was the first Connections event they’d held in San Francisco, at the Vitale on Mission Street. Visitors included Intel, Wells Fargo, Eleven Inc, Sonos, Benefit Cosmetics, Edelman, Gap, R/GA, Theory SF, Lyft, Sephora, Facebook and Wired (which gives us the chance to mention you should look out on our site for a chat with Wired creative director David Moretti in the coming weeks, where we discuss our collaborations over the years). It was a great chance to see existing clients again, and meet some new ones. Plus, it was a chance to show off some of Danny Sangra’s film work – we picked The Tourists, the film he made for mytheresa.com and Balenciaga to show to the Le Book jury.

After a day of meeting new faces and old friends, we headed back to where we were staying, exhausted but enlivened by stopping off at The Mill for what they insist on calling (like Dean Martin) a pie, but to us was a pizza. Albeit one the size of a planet. And a bottle of red, though a little less expensive this time.

Some went on to the second part of Connections West Coast, in LA. But we decided to stay put and meet up with some potential new friends in the city.

The next two days were packed with appointments galore. I loved this, because it’s a chance to show off the array of Breed talent to people who are genuinely interested. We met with Facebook (good to see Rachel Gogel again, now relocated to San Francisco after time at T Brand and The New York Times in New York), and The California Sunday Magazine (while we’re here we should congratulate Leo Jung and the team for the two awards won at the Ellies 2017 National Magazine Awards for Print and Digital Media, one for Excellence in Magazine Design, the other for Photography).

We met the creative teams at Apple over in Sunnyvale and Cupertino, and a reunion with Arem Duplessis, who used to work at the New York Times. That took us back to Arem’s first commission, with Andy Gilmore, for Key Magazine in 2007.

We finished our days of meetings by hanging out with black Labradors Missy and Peppa in the reception of Cutwater just before the final meeting. A perfect chance to decompress a little.

We didn’t have time to see everybody that we wanted to, but we already have a list for next time. Oh, and we should thank Jessica and Michelle at Argonaut for the top San Francisco tips.

In short, I loved this trip, and this city. It has clean fresh air, isn’t as hectic as New York, has a different vibe to LA and its own unique thing going on, Plus, you’re just half an hour away from beautiful countryside. The sun suns much of the time, and I don’t mind the fog… it just adds to the atmosphere and makes for better photos of that bridge.

Where to next? I’ve heard wonderful things about Lake Tahoe…

Words: Olivia Triggs

Image: Amy Milligan

 

 

 

G . F Smith

Artists Steven Wilson, MASA, Andy Gilmore and Danny Sangra have taken part in G . F Smith Papers’ Worlds Favourite Colour project

Artists Steven Wilson, MASA, Andy Gilmore and Danny Sangra have taken part in G . F Smith Papers’ Worlds Favourite Colour project. Find out more on the Zetteler link below and stay tuned to find more of Breed London’s artists favourite shades.

G . F Smith

Connections San Francisco 31st Jan 2017

Breed’s making Connections in San Francisco

Breed’s making Connections in San Francisco

Le Book, the annual reference directory to the best in international creative talent, is running Connections, a series of 10 trade shows worldwide. It’s effectively Le Book live, and Breed is very excited to be going to the San Francisco edition.

Connections bills itself as a gathering of the best in image creation worldwide, offering opportunities for artists and their representatives to make the link with brand managers, creative directors, fashion directors, editors and other taste-makers in the creative world.

We’ll be reporting back on who we meet, what we see, and new connections we make soon.

 

 

Christmas 2016

Breed Christmas 2016. A festive round robin from Breed

Breed Christmas 2016

A festive round robin from Breed

We thought we’d do something a little different to mark the holiday season this year and send you a Breed round-robin letter. You know, one of those massive missives that arrives in a Christmas card from someone you once met on holiday, describing their year in excruciating detail. But we’ll spare you tales of Auntie Doris’ brave battle with lumbago or young Tarquin’s stellar performance as a sheep in the school Nativity play, and instead let you in on what our band of artists, photographers and film-making talent got up to over the course of 2016. And remember, this is just a small taste of our favourite projects amongst all that went on.

January

Cat Garcia started the year with a stunning personal folio of images documenting a trip to South America, and hasn’t stopped since, with commissions for MR PORTER, The Journal and Boys by Girls magazine. In between, she’s been shooting subjects including Sam McKnight, Skye Gyngell and Olivia von Halle, for her Quarterly exhibition next year. And we were also thrilled that she was named as an official ambassador for Leica.

Meanwhile, Neal Murren was busy creating a beautifully-detailed map for Pottermore, the digital heart of J. K. Rowling’s magical universe. Over 20 feet across, the piece also featured at Universal Studios Orlando ‘Celebration of Harry Potter’ event at the end of January.

February

The big event for James Joyce was his solo exhibition at colette Paris in February, based around the word ‘Like’, and how it has taken the place of the word ‘Love’ for the internet generation. His illustration work has also graced the covers and pages of Le Monde and M le magazine du Monde.

And Anna Bu Kliewer found herself illustrating a piece about walking across London by Will Self in ES magazine, just one among many pieces of work she produced this year.

March

Matt Blease turned up with some new boards he’d designed for skater types Flatspot in March. And he stayed on wheels for his next projects, though two this time. First he illustrated Rapha’s celebration of the Tour de France, before setting off on his own cycling odyssey across Belgium, following the route of the Tour of Flanders for his own project An Illustrator’s Guide to the Ronde.

April

This spring, we were delighted to welcome Craig & Karl to Breed. More recently, they’ve produced ‘Optimystic’, an installation for Showcase ITCH in Guatemala City. And they worked on a project with IRIS for Wacom, which is to be released in Dec 2016.

May

Steven Wilson opened his first solo show ‘Article’ at The Book Club in Shoreditch in May. But that was just part of an extremely busy year for Steven, that included working trips to LA and New York, and collaborations with Strut and Fibre, MullenLowe, Citroën, The Guardian, New Scientist and Wired.

June

MASA created a series of striking collages to illustrate a piece by Florence Rolfe on swimming pools in House & Garden’s June issue. He’s also been heavily focused on personal works, including the series’ ‘Future Primitive’ and ‘Imaginary Travel’.

July

The summer belonged to Natasha Law, whose exhibition ‘Line and Curves’ was at Eleven in London during July and August, while just a month earlier she was one of six illustrators commissioned by British Vogue to help them celebrate their centenary in the June issue.

August

Paula Castro worked with Here Design creating some incredibly detailed illustrations for the Palomar Cookbook, specifically the ‘For Those Who Want to Kick Back’ section, on the art of making the Soho restaurant’s signature cocktails. The book was published in August by Octopus.

September

As autumn approached, Kate Moross was asked by Disney to design a poster for children, highlighting the principles of being a modern princess. For Kate, this was a dream job, as she’s been a Disney fan since childhood.  She’s also been hard at work with Studio Moross on numerous projects, highlights including work with her team for MTV on various projects, including the broadcast design and show packaging for the VMAs, and developing campaigns for both Wild Life and Parklife festivals for 2017.

October

Daisy de Villeneuve collaborated with the V&A and Penguin Random House Children’s publishing on a book ‘Fashion Mash Up’. It’s part of a range of books that encourage children to engage creatively with art and design. The book was issued in October.

November

The big event this year for Danny Sangra was the Hollywood premiere of his feature film ‘Goldbricks in Bloom’ in November, which followed earlier screenings in London and New York. The Los Angeles Times described it as ‘sharp’ and ‘surprising’ while calling Zosia Mamet’s performance ‘pitch perfect’. Not that Danny has directed just the one film recently – this year there were also the three short films he created for Standard Hotels’ ‘Standard Time – check in/out’ campaign, and the short film ‘Tourists’ he made for mytheresa.com and Balenciaga. Plus, as he’s recently joined production company B-Reel Films, we can expect a lot more him onscreen soon.

Over in Germany, Andy Gilmore was working with Mercedes Benz, which came in addition to pieces he did for Wired Italy and Hyperion in the USA.

December

And so to Christmas, which sees Steven Wilson getting into the festive spirit with Hunters, bringing the feel of the penny arcade to their ‘Winter Hunterland’ campaign.

Back at Breed headquarters, we’ve had a pretty busy year, too with marketing trips to Paris, Berlin (x two) and Miami this month.

All that remains is for us to wish you all a very Happy Christmas, and we look forward to seeing what 2017 holds for everyone (Spoiler – we already know there are some very exciting things in store from us).

Image – Steven Wilson

 

Miami Art Basel – A brief encounter

Miami Art Basel – A brief encounter

By Olivia Triggs

Earlier this month, I flew to Miami for Art Basel’s sojourn in America. They were showcasing work from leading galleries in North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia and Africa. A perfect opportunity to see what’s going on in the wider art community, catch up with old friends and make some new ones.

Flying from the cold crisp November air of London to the hot stickiness of Miami is a study in extremes.

But then that just sets you up for the shock of arriving at Ocean Drive late on Saturday night. One word – pulsating. There’s a brightly-coloured super-sized cocktail on every roadside table. Men passing by with huge yellow snakes wrapped around their necks and parrots on their shoulders. Pastel-coloured art deco architecture on one side and the Atlantic on the other.

Things got even better when I arrived at my hotel – the team at Mr & Mrs Smith had very kindly upgraded my room, so I was now staying in the top floor suite, complete with panoramic ocean views. Bliss. As my home for a week in Miami, it’ll do.

I started my first full day trying to get acclimatised by joining the joggers on the South Beach strip. 17k steps of acclimatisation, if you want precise info. Followed by a couple of refreshing plunges into the sea. That set me up for some work, in my temporary office at the other end of the strip, on Miami Beach.

But enough about work – here’s a quick run-through of what I got up to in Miami (which was also work – no, really):

Exploring the galleries and art of the Wynwood area.

Enjoyed a delicious lunch at Casa Tua with a familiar face from London – Sarah Williams of M&C Saatchi.

Attended the Art Miami and Context and Aqua previews, in the midtown Wynwood arts district. Personal favourite – Harland Miller as part of Other Criteria. In fact, I was overwhelmed with the amount of art to see. And this was just in one pavilion.

United Miami followed. Another huge tent filled with art of all kinds.

And my personal highlight of the week? A sunset picnic supper in celebration of Jordan Sullivan’s exhibition ‘The Divine Nothing’. Hosted by the lovely team at Elephant Magazine and Mama Gallery. Now there was an evening. Sampling some breathtaking food – with top prize going to the Alma restaurant in the gardens of The Standard Spa, Miami beach. Ceviche with tropical fruit and avocado, beet and passion fruit salad with mole, spicy gazpacho verde with smoked shrimp, smoked brisket with chimichurri, and smoke-roasted hen with wood mushrooms.

Away from work, I spent time in the Big Cypress National Reserve and Everglades, and took a trip across a total of 42 bridges to the West Key. (The Lonely Planet pitched it right – ‘The Keys have always been ‘defined by two ‘E’s’: edgy and eccentric. And Key West when it comes to the last outpost of America – is where only the most eccentric dare venture. On one side of the road, literary festivals, Caribbean villas, tropical noir and expensive galleries. On the other, an S&M fetishist parade and frat boys vomiting on their sorority girlfriends. The locals revel in their funky non conformity here, probably because weirdness is still integral to the Key West brand’)

In short, you’re never going to see it all, but it’s the perfect way to dip your toe into the madness of Miami.

After that, it was back to London, and the culture shock in reverse. For all its pleasures, London pulsates a little more gently than Miami. But it’s home.

Kate Moross and Natasha Law – Simba

Kate Moross and Natasha Law have combined forces with fellow artists Camille Walala, D’Face and Freebeez as the Simba Art Collective to raise money for homeless charity Crisis this Christmas.

Kate Moross and Natasha Law get into bed with Crisis and Simba Sleep

Kate Moross and Natasha Law have combined forces with fellow artists Camille Walala, D’Face and Freebeez as the Simba Art Collective to raise money for homeless charity Crisis this Christmas.

Each of the artists is working in collaboration with design-led mattress brand Simba Sleep to create a limited edition collection of designer mattresses. There will be 20 mattresses made per designer, with all profits from the 100 mattresses in total going to Crisis. On top of that, Simba will also be donating 5% of profits from all of its mattress sales during November and December.

Each purchase will help the charity deliver  Crisis at Christmas, which each year, provides hot meals, shelter and companionship to more than 11,000 homeless guests over the festive period.

Natasha’s mattress design is called ‘The Girls are Out’ and features two reclining female figures joined by a pink ribbon.

Kate’s ‘Dreams Come True’ mattress shows of her love of typography and colour, playfully alluding to all the good things that can happen in a bed.  

The Simba Art Collective range will be available in a standard UK Double (£599) and King Size (£699) and will be available exclusively from https://simbasleep.com/pages/collective

Each mattress comes with a 100-night sleep trial promise and a 10 year guarantee.

Going batty for The Art of Ping Pong

We talked to Algy Batten, about The Art of Ping Pong, a charitable project that sees some of the world’s most exciting artists using their talents to produce unique ping pong bats that are auctioned to make money for different causes.

We talked to Algy Batten, about The Art of Ping Pong, a charitable project that sees some of the world’s most exciting artists using their talents to produce unique ping pong bats that are auctioned to make money for different causes. You can see more and put in a bid yourself at theartofpingpong.co.uk

Tell us a little about The Art of Ping Pong. How did the project come about?

It’s actually a very long story as it was a case of quite a few stars aligning over time.

At Fivefootsix, my old agency that I ran with my good friend Mark McConnachie, we were invited to enter a battle of the agencies ping pong tournament which, amazingly, we won!

I’ve always loved ping pong and so this tournament win inspired me to buy a table for us all at work.

Around the same time I was an early member of creative running and mentoring organization Run Dem Crew, and good friends with the founder Charlie Dark. At Run Dem Crew we met each Tuesday evening in the Nike Space in the railway arches in Shoreditch. Charlie knew I was a ping pong fan, as I’d often invite mates round to work after hours for ping pong and pizza nights, and he suggested we approach Nike to use their space for a ping pong tournament night. And the proposal, naturally, had to have an artistic twist so I suggested we had artists work on each of the four tables used for the tournament that could be auctioned off at the end of the evening. 

Sadly Nike didn’t bite. I don’t think ping pong was on their radar. So we, at Fivefootsix, decided to hold our own tournament in our building, where all the neighbouring companies could enter and get to know each other. We thought it would also be good if it raised money for BBC Children in Need, as they were a client, and that’s when the illustrative bat idea came into play!

And here we are three years later. Fivefootsix has closed, but I’m still taking The Art of Ping Pong forward.

All profits from this year’s auction will go the Alzheimer’s Society. How did you get involved with the charity?

I had heard that there was research that suggested ping pong benefitted Alzheimer’s sufferers. And so the idea to donate the profits of this year’s auction to The Alzheimer’s Society came from there. And so I approached them to get behind the idea. I like the link to this charity in particular, but it may be that I still choose different charities each year.

How do you select artists to take part?

It’s important the project is kept fresh each year, so I pick four to six key artists to start with and approach them, then I build it out from there, inviting artists that complement the mix.

This year I really enjoyed opening it up to jewellery designers and sculptors etc. It helps to keep it interesting.

What is their typical response to being asked to take part?

I’m always so grateful that almost all the artists we approach say yes. We’ve probably only had a handful of people saying no in four separate auctions.

Matt Blease created a brilliantly tongue-in-cheek bat. What made you choose him to take part?

What I like about this project is that because the canvas is a ping pong bat people think differently about their solutions than if the medium was paper. And so I think it’s good to have artists in the mix who have humour in their work, and Matt was one of those. But I never saw his solution coming, absolutely brilliant!

Studio Moross is known for its wit and eye-popping style, which is perfect for an unusual brief like this. Were you impressed with the final bat?

Again they approached it with the desire to play with the format and it’s brilliant. So much fun.

What did you think of James Joyce’s approach to the project?

It’s as if his broken smileys and clown faces were made for the shape of the ping pong bat. It’s one of my favourites from a pure graphic perspective. My girlfriend is monitoring its progress in the auction as she’s eyeing it up for our wall at home!

The Art of Ping Pong has been running for three years now, what has been the best thing about watching it grow?

There are so many enjoyable aspects. It’s great to raise money and awareness for the charities, it’s amazing to work with so many artists who I admire and it’s great to see the body of work expand. I can’t wait to have enough material to produce a book in a few year’s time!

What are your plans for the future of the project?

Good question.

Essentially, in the short term, growth and development. The bigger and better I can make the brand the more the auction part of The Art of Ping Pong can raise more money for charity and the better platform it is to showcase the talents of the artists.

But it’s still a self-run and self-funded project, so I have to be clever about how I do this, as sadly my own time and money isn’t endless.

It also needs the support of so many wonderful partners to bring it to life alongside myself. From Roll Studio who do an amazing job on the website, Colt Press who generously print the book and Fedrigoni for providing the paper to photographers, retouchers and this year 71A Gallery who have been brilliant, as were all the drink sponsors for the launch night, too.

So, firstly I may look into corporate sponsorship, as I believe it’s now a viable brand to be associated with that has a value, as well as the fact that the auction raises money for charity, too. I may also look into doing a Kickstarter to help support it.

I’m dipping my toe into doing products, but I reckon that costs as much as it makes, unless you nail it well.

And then in the future I want to look into the overall brand of ‘The Art of…’ and where I can take that.

Closing Fivefootsix has given me the opportunity to explore new ideas for The Art of Ping Pong, and for that I’m grateful. But I’ll always miss the excellent team Mark and I built there, it was special…

How much money has been raised so far?

It’s still a small project really, so far it has raised about £10k for charity over the first three auctions. This year’s auction is looking good too, it’s exciting to watch and it doesn’t end till midnight on 30th November so there’s still time for this to be the best year yet!

 

The Art of Ping Pong 2016

James Joyce, Matt Blease and Studio Moross are all involved for this year’s The Art of Ping Pong 2016.

James Joyce, Matt Blease and Studio Moross are all involved for this year’s The Art of Ping Pong 2016.

Supporting Alzheimer’s Society

Alzheimers

For the complete list of those involved this year, see below:

  1. Designer Morag Myerscough
  2. Conceptual artists Jake and Dinos Chapman
  3. Typographer Alan Kitching
  4. Illustrator Jacob Everett
  5. Pop artist Philip Colbert
  6. Graphic artist Filfury
  7. Jewellery designers Nylon Sky
  8. Illustrator Damien Poulain
  9. Artists Kai & Sunny
  10. Photographer Jo Lacey
  11. Sculptor Wilfred Wood
  12. Illustrator John Burgerman
  13. Illustrator Linda Linko
  14. Illustrator Lakwena Maciver
  15. Illustrator Lauren Rolwing
  16. Conceptual artist Ryan Gander
  17. Street artist Thierry Noir
  18. Artist James Joyce
  19. Illustrator David Shillinglaw
  20. Illustrator Matt Blease
  21. Designers Studio Moross

 

 

New Breed key rings created by Anna Walker

New Breed key rings created by Anna Walker

We recently worked with the amazing Anna Walker (who, for those in the know, is closely linked to Matt Blease) to create limited edition Breed key rings, that we can give to a few of our favourite people.

We loved working with Anna on this project and are bowled over by the results, complete with our James Joyce ‘specs’ logo.  Shown here are a few shots of them in the making…

Each of the key rings was designed and made by hand in London, using the highest quality vegetable-tanned clay Italian leather with gold foil for the Breed logo.

Vegetable-tanning is the most traditional technique for treating leather. An environmentally-friendly process, it uses natural tannins extracted from wood, bark, fruits and leaves. The raw-cut edges and unlined interiors of the designs celebrate the natural elegance of this beautiful material.

The Anna Walker ethos is informed by a love for clean lines, functionality and minimalist luxury. Constructed by specialist crafts people her timeless yet modern leather goods burnish beautifully with use and exposure to the elements and, over time, develop a warm, unique patina.

All of her leather products can be personalised with gold foil or blind debossed lettering by hand in her East London studio.

You can read more about Anna and see her current collection in full at Anna Walker London

Converse – Kate Moross and Steven Wilson

Kate Moross and Steven Wilson create artwork for The Garage: The new Converse HQ in Hilversum, Netherlands

Converse. Welcome to The Garage: New EHQ opens in Hilversum, Netherlands

September 2015 saw the new Converse Europe’s headquarters in Hilversum, Netherlands opening its doors for business and creativity. The building is officially named ‘The Garage’. The name is literal (the space is above a car garage), but it’s also inspired by the idea of a garage being a place of creativity, ingenuity, collaboration and passionate work.

Both Kate Moross and Steven Wilson were asked to provide artwork for the building. Kate created a type piece, Turn Up The Volume, while Steven created Old Glory, taking its title from the nickname of the US flag and with a design based around the flag’s stars and stripes.

The Garage itself is far more than just a place to tinker with engines. It is a modern workplace with a thoughtful design – a space that vibrates with energy, creativity and inspiration. It’s all-at-once authentic to Converse, its people and its European locale.

As the millions who wear Converse sneakers all over the world would agree, not all creatives create in the same way. What The Garage has done is embrace those unique perspectives, and customise the building according to each team’s specific style.

From the moment anyone walks through the front doors of The Garage, their creativity and inspiration are nurtured. It is a headquarters where those with a creative spirit are compelled to get on their feet, connect with fellow team members, and use the space around them as a resource. The Garage is inherently Converse.

The only thing left to do is appreciate the amazing work that’s bound to come out of the venture now and in the future.