Plus Design Festival

Monday, November 3rd, 2008


Plus International Design Festival
5-8 November 2008
Fazeley Studios, Digbeth, Birmingham

Plus International Design Festival returns to Birmingham for its third consecutive year from 5-8 November 2008, with an impressive line-up of industry leaders.

Speakers including Ian Anderson, founder of The Designers Republic, Jeff Willis of Perks Willis Design, and Guardian cartoonist Steve Bell will feature at this year’s festival and typography conference, taking place at Fazeley Studios in Digbeth, Birmingham.

The four day event includes an extended programme of lectures, workshops, exhibitors and events, giving delegates the opportunity to hear from national and international experts in graphic and typography design for print, web and interactive media.

Ian Anderson will open the Plus Lectures on Wednesday 5 November. Anderson founded The Designers Republic, which produced a series of album covers for Leeds band Age of Chance (1980’s), one of which was listed in Q Magazine’s ‘100 Best Record Covers of All Time’ in 2001. Anderson will be followed by Rob Coke and Ian Hambleton of Studio Output.

On Thursday 6 November, delegates will hear from Jeff Willis of Perks Willis Design and Jonathan Barnbrook, best-known for the cover of David Bowie’s ‘Heathen’ album in 2002, where he first sampled his ‘Priori’ typeface. A number of other well-known fonts, such as Bastard and Exocet, are also designed by Barnbrook. From 1997-2003 Barnbrook also collaborated with Damien Hirst on his book ‘I Want To Spend The Rest of My Life Everywhere, with Everyone, One to One, Always, Forever, Now’.

Friday’s line-up sees award-winning Guardian cartoonist Steve Bell talking about his most memorable caricature, John Major in his Y-fronts. The final lecture will come from Jamie Wieck of Airside, ranked number three in Design Week’s ‘Top 50 UK Creative Agencies’.

Hands-on workshops will run throughout Plus, including 4Talent’s Writing Surgeries, Coventry University’s Letterpress printing, Alex Hughes’ Cartoons, and Calligraphy with Linda Winnett.

Fazeley Studios will also be home to exhibitors such as Channel 4’s Ten4 Magazine, Jane Anderson, Coventry School of Art & Design, The Designers Republic, Timothy Donaldson, Feed, Girls Who Draw, Periscope, We Make Art, WOKmedia, Wolverhampton University School of Art & Design. Birmingham Institute of Art & Design (BIAD), Clusta, Type, Fluid, Fused Magazine and Illuminate.

Since its inception in 2006, Plus has played host to top design-industry figures such as Peter Saville, Michael Wolff and Brian Webb.

Established by designers for designers, Plus also aims to bring to the fore the array of young, creative talent in Birmingham and the City’s design heritage. The Festival has tapped into a need in the City’s creative industries, which contribute over £1bn to the economy.

Caroline Archer, Director of Plus Expo Ltd said, “Plus acts as a place for members of the design community to meet, exchange ideas, showcase their work, discuss the theory and practice of design, and reach out to the wider community.”

Birmingham is home to pioneering typographic educator, Leonard Jay, and one of the UK’s most influential printers of the 20th Century, the Kynoch Press. The most well-known of Birmingham’s typographic heroes is John Baskerville, creator of the renowned Baskerville Font. The Baskerville Project, sponsored by Birmingham City University, will showcase an animated movie at the festival to celebrate the life of the pioneer. Gabriel Hummerston, sculptor of bespoke memorials, will also carve a commemorative plaque in his memory.

Birmingham-based Historian Ben Waddington, will also be guiding a series of walking tours. These will include the John Baskerville tour and Type Tour, exploring the use of lettering on buildings, public art, mosaics, signs and plaques across the City.

Tickets for this year’s festival are now available and cost £15.00 for a one-day ticket and £40.00 for a full festival ticket. Concessions available.

For more information and to buy tickets, go to Plus Design Festival

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