Pentagram Design Studios – Pocket Profile

Pentagram Design Studios

Pentagram¬†is the world’s largest independent¬†design¬†consultancy. The firm is owned and run by 24 partners, each of whom are leaders in their individual fields. It was founded in 1972, by Alan Fletcher, Theo Crosby, Colin Forbes, Kenneth Grange, and Mervyn Kurlansky at Needham Road, Notting Hill, London. The company has offices in London, New York City, San Francisco, Berlin and Austin, Texas.

What do they do?

Their work encompasses graphics and identity, products and packaging, exhibitions and installations, websites and digital experiences, advertising and communications, sound and motion. Pentagrams 24 partners are all practicing designers, and work both collaboratively and independently. They have a unique structure of working and are one of the only design studios, where the owners contribute and design themselves. They believe this reflects our conviction that great design cannot happen without passion, intelligence and above all, personal commitment. This is evident through their major portfolio which spans over 5 decades and showcases designs for every imaginable industry, for clients of all sizes.

I feel so inspired after watching interviews on many of the firms designers, including Michael Bierut and Natasha Jen. They speak of the ever changing development of technology and how design is morphing every day in order to keep up. However, Bierut does explain how even though the tools and approach to practically making things has changed since his beginning at Pentagram, he also states how the intentions of the designer has not. Passion and satisfying quality is still being produced by Pentagram.

There are so many examples of fine design, demonstrated on the Pentagram website, so I decided to narrow it down and talk about an area that particularly caught my eye and something that I feel is very relevant with the ongoing stress of a pandemic circulating our world.

Pentagram design for many healthcare companies and projects. Below you can see just a snapshot of the many examples of fine design they have completed so far.

The one which stood out the most to me, was “Happy Data”.

The description given for Happy Data is, “A series of data visualizations looks for the positive during a time of crisis.” Giorgia Lupi and her team of designers decided to focus on the positive and started working on Happy Data, a series of hopeful views of the world through data and drawings. The visualizations combine hand-drawn type and infographics with photo snapshots taken by the team and their friends, using information as a lens on current events. I think it is a beautiful way of helping people stay positive, during such a concerning time. The self-initiated project was conceived in response to twin crises: the global pandemic of Covid-19, which necessitated much of the world to go on lockdown and set off the worst economic recession since the Great Depression; and the killing of George Floyd and the epidemic of police brutality against Black people in the US, which was answered by massive protests supporting the Black Lives Matter movement.

I really admire the work of Pentagram and will definitely be using them for future reference.



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