Symbol is a London-based, independent, quarterly paper that curates the work of a new generation of international artists. Founded by Amy Knight and Alex Egan, the first two issues have already achieved a broad roster of collaborators and contributors, including Oliver Laric, Juliette Bonneviot, Jon Rafman and Daniel Swan.

I was comissioned to create the visual identity of the magazine, from the packaging, presentation, and printing, to the masthead, typography and layout.

The dialogue between web ephemera and print’s permanence permeates almost every aspect of the magazine’s identity – images frames are rigid, unclickable parodies of the standard web interface, the contents page transforms Google’s image search grid format into a text directory. Despite being free to the reader, the challenge was to create an object and content that felt more than disposable.

10 Jun 2012
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The magazine lacks a conventional Masthead, instead presenting key information on a disposable plastic outer wrapping which, when removed, leaves an object whose identity is conveyed in purely iconographic and pictoral terms. There is no text on the front or back cover of the magazine. Symbol’s “Pill” logo – which appears throughout the magazine in various guises – can, like the ManMakeMusic shards, be displayed either horizontally or vertically.

These trademark aspects of Symbol’s identity are also implemented on its simple, elegant website, which resists the temptation to provide blog style content, directing visitors instead towards the publication itself.

 

 

 

18 Sep 2012
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24 Sep 2012
Symbol Identity
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24 Sep 2012
Symbol Identity
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24 Sep 2012
Symbol Identity
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The magazine is presented in two typefaces, both of which are bespoke modifications of existing faces. For titling and main identity, I wanted to create a voice that was completely distinct from the oversaturated swiss serifs that pervade the new visual arts community, and so created NeuSymbol. The humanist serif titling face is a redrawing of Philip Bouwsma‘s Neuhengen, with the brush swash of its horizontals replaced with flat roman scores. The body text is a simple reworking of the classic Futura into Futura Symbol, with an extremely wide let inspired by my love of Japanese editorial design.

3 Sep 2012
Symbol Website
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3 Sep 2012
Symbol Website
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