Breed Christmas update 2023
That’s 2023 done
Here we are again in December, writing our round-up and it feels like no time at all has passed since we were writing this last year. But here we go with summing up 2023, picking our highlights of what our artists got up to:
We headed into 2023 with Anna Bu Kliewer reworking iconic surrealist images into zodiac signs to tie into the Design Museum’s Objects of Desire: Surrealism and Design 1924-Today exhibition. Elsewhere, Danny Sangra was creating posters for a National Theatre project introducing theatre to schools around the country.
Craig & Karl opened an exhibition of their portrait work at the CHAO Art Centerin Beijing, while Steve Wilson debuted some new psychedelic typography.
On the 1st of the month Danny Sangra appeared onstage at the Melkweg in Amsterdam to talk about filmmaking, and later unleashed a short animation seemingly inspired by the work of Russ Meyer.
Anna Bu Kliewer put some of her carefully created collages up for sale on Collagerie, appropriately enough. But the month really belonged to Catherine Garcia, who completed a number of films plus photography in Portugal for beach and loungewear brand Frescobol Carioca, was featured in the British Journal of Photography as a Leica brand ambassador, and photographed the female-owned, female-serving Savile Row tailors of The Deck for The Telegraph supplement Luxury.
Catherine Garcia continued her run of work into April, creating an evocative video focused on the craftspeople who work for Sunspel, before being interviewed with musician husband Carlos Garcia for the website of menswear brand Aubin.
Annie Atkins also had a busy month, designing the cover for Melissa Bank’s novel The Girls’ Guide to Hunting and Fishing, being interviewed by digital design magazine STIRWorld, and starting her monthly Graphic Design for Filmmaking Portfolio workshops in Dublin.
Paula Castro was also working with literature, producing illustrations for books published by Argentinian publishers Caracol Ediciones, and book jackets for Buenos Aires publisher Adriano Hidalgo editora.
Danny Sangra was trying his hand at AI this month, using it to create a trailer for his forthcoming film ‘Osaka Deka’. He also put some of his non-AI artwork up for sale on his website and produced some new animations.
Finally, we welcomed a new artist to the Breed family – Elisa Alcalde.
Phillippa Mills was the first to embrace Spring, showcasing some new work featuring birds, flowering quince and periwinkle.
Matt Blease, before heading off to New York, saw the results of a collaboration with Sunspel, in the form of a capsule collection of summer essentials featuring his designs.
Danny Sangra was back, this time staging a takeover of Mother London’s Instagram page for a week.
Paula Castro produced some beautiful illustrative work for Brooklyn bar The Maison Premiere’s book of cocktail recipes.
Not that Paula was working alone, as Annie Atkins designed the cover for the same book. And Annie was also to be found talking about her work at the online creative festival International Assembly.
May was James Joyce’s month, as he opened an exhibition of his iconic clown faces at StolenSpace Gallery in Whitechapel, as well as designing a set of tea caddies inspired by British attractions for Visit Britain’s ‘Spilling the Tea on Great Britain’ ad campaign.
Matt Blease popped up with a set of postcards showing off iconic items from The Conran Shop’s range of furniture and lighting.
Catherine Garcia was back with Sunspel, providing imagery for a capsule collaboration with MR PORTER. She also photographed another collaboration, this time between Frescobol Carioca and Matches, and was commissioned by Pentagram to create a visual identity for the V&A’s new Photography Centre.
Phillippa Mills debuted a new personal work based on an image of model Anna Ewers seen in Vogue Paris.
Anna Bu Kliewer’s work was seen in a map that formed the centrespread of the May/June issue of High Life magazine for British Airways. She also created animations for the online version of Twin magazine, featuring musician, model and Chanel ambassador Soo Joo Park.
Annie Atkins created a manifesto for creatives for WeTransfer’s digital arts and editorial platform WePresent.
Danny Sangra turned up hosting a workshop with the long title of Multi-Hyphenate in the Making: Moving Image Self Portraits with Danny Sangra and Premiere Pro at The Truman Brewery as part of Adobe Live from D&AD 2023.
Quentin Jones ran some new personal work by us direct from her studio in Brooklyn, while James Joyce had a new piece called Can of Flowers available as a giclee print from the Art Car Boot Fair Spring Bounce.
Anna Bu Kliewer worked with Japanese health and beauty brand BAUM on imagery for the launch of their aromatic room spray products, illustrated an article ‘Confessions of a food award judge’ for ft.com, and was the subject of a short film by her friend Naoto Sakamoto.
Steven Wilson was the latest Breed artist to try experimenting with AI, using Adobe’s new integrated AI functionality to help him create images of landscapes and birds.
Matt Blease consolidated his Big Apple credentials by creating some merchandise for The New Yorker’s softball team, including a baseball cap, t-shirt and water bottle.
Danny Sangra, meanwhile, directed a video for Nike x British Vogue showing Lionesses Chloe Kelly, Ella Toone and Demi Stokes taking on a series of challenges like dribbling with a copy of Vogue on their head and playing Pictionary. He also designed some menus for Chet’s, a Thai-Americana restaurant at The Hoxton Shepherd’s Bush.
Catherine Garcia made another short film with Frescobol Carioca, this one in Rio de Janeiro, to showcase their High Summer collection. She also made two short films for Make Hauser & Wirth, and took the photos for an article for lifestyle brand SheerLuxe looking at TAG Heuer watches.
Yelena Yemchuk was pleased to have worked on illustrations for a book Modern Ukrainian Prose and Poetry published by Vogue Ukraine. And Anna Bu Kliewer was also creating striking images, this time for London perfumiers Penhaligon’s and their Posh Wash range, as well as providing the visual for her first New York Times magazine cover.
Elsewhere, Quentin Jones collaborated on the launch of a new jewellery brand Ryenn’s Eyes, and we got to know Elisa Alcalde a little better with a Q&A.
Steven Wilson started August by illustrating an article on grab bags by Ellen Airhart in the New York Times.
James Joyce worked on an inspiring piece, creating a set of 21 postcards for 21 Silver Linings, a project by design consultancy Greenspace, each one illustrating a positive story from the previous year. The postcards could be pieced together to create one large scene.
Anna Bu Kliewer returned to the pages of Elle US, placing a necklace by Tiffany & Co in an illustration.
Catherine Garcia was back with Sunspel, doing the shoot for their Autumn/Winter 2023 collection.
Andy Gilmore was getting started on the Christmas rush early, as he designed the prestigious Space NK beauty advent calendar, with luxury beauty products behind each of its 25 doors.
Matt Blease was in The New Yorker, sharing his Tips for Transporting Children by Bike in New York.
Yelena Yemchuk was part of a group show called Consensual Ennui in LA, alongside Andrew Theodore, Eddie Ruscha, and Ana Kraš.
Annie Atkins was in LA, presenting Walking the Tightrope: Fact vs Fiction in Film Design at Adobe MAX, The Creativity Conference.
Steven Wilson had an active month. First, he unveiled his new mural ‘Yesterday Tomorrow’, featuring local north London characters and iconography. It welcomes visitors arriving at Brent Cross West station, acting as a gateway to the new Brent Cross Town development. He also created an advent calendar for L’Occitane, alongside some beautiful designs for their Christmas limited editions, including packaging and paper bags.
Annie Atkins’ work could be seen in an issue of investment company Charles Schwab’s magazine Onward, illustrating some common points of concern for investors.
Catherine Garcia kept up her run with Frescobol Carioca, with a short film showing off the brand’s pre-Spring 2024 collection. She also photographed India Knight for the Sunday Times Style magazine.
Danny Sangra was in the Bahamas, taking part in the first ever regional art fair in the Caribbean, FUZE, with his work exhibited at a gallery in Nassau.
Anna Bu Kliewer had some of her montage work in the Nov/Dec issue of Harrods Magazine, for an article on luxury skin products.
James Joyce was preparing for the festive season, illustrating the Wall Street Journal’s ‘Holiday Books: Our 2023 Guide to the Best Gifts’.
Matt Blease spent some time in New York earlier in 2023, filling his sketchbook with the things he saw as he went. From those spontaneous sketches he compiled a little limited edition zine, which he recently started selling on his own site. He was also well into the Christmas spirit with Vitra, designing some decorations for the Christmas tree in their Rivington Street showroom.
(Thanks to Matt for our festive Vitra image shown with this feature.)
Danny Sangra’s Samsung Galaxy Watch6 spots through Mother also came out in December.
And Craig & Karl revealed their new South Korean luxury golf wear brand, offering everything from jackets and hats to balls and tees, all emblazoned with their signature vivid designs.
On to more agency based news…
One of the highlights of the year was when we took part in The Society of Publication Designers’ annual Illustration Portfolio Review, where new illustrative talent can get help and advice from leaders in the industry.
We also got to welcome an amazing new artist to our roster, in Elisa Alcalde. Based in Chile, Elisa works in watercolours. We’ve already showcased some of her work, and are looking forward to what 2024 may bring for her.
Following our auction of pieces donated by our artists to raise money for Ukraine last year, we decided to do the same thing again, after watching in horror as events unfolded in southern Israel and Gaza. All money raised will go to Choose Love, an NGO that provides help to refugees.
We continued talking to people we find inspirational in our Breed presents… Q&A series. Those people included architect and photographer John Pawson, artist, designer and columnist Luke Edward Hall, CEO of The Royal Ballet School Christopher Powney, founder of StoreyStudio Robert Storey, CCO of David Collins StudioSimon Rawlings, host of The Grand Tourist podcast Dan Rubinstein, and Bunny Kinney, Creative Director at NOWNESS.
But this year, we have moved beyond the simple printed Q&As as we launched Breed presents… The Podcast, which has seen us talking in person to a variety of people. The podcast started on home territory with Breed artist Steven Wilson in June, then recent Breed presents… guest John Pawson returning for a chat in July. Since then we’ve talked to Danny Sangra, Annie Atkins, writer and journalist Clover Stroud and most recently creative director, Kucha Swara. We already have guests lined up for our second series, so keep listening and watch out for them from January 2024.
That brings us to the end of another eventful year at Breed. We wish you all a very happy Christmas and all the best for the New Year.
Olivia and all at Breed