art

Inspired By: LAND

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LAND artists and designers Caleb Owen Everitt and Ryan Rhodes.

LAND artists and designers Caleb Owen Everitt and Ryan Rhodes.

LAND: Transcending Style and time

Austin, Texas based design studio LAND is a hard act to categorize.

A team that clearly thrives on rethinking what it means to be a 'designer' in the 21st century, LAND creates a unique body of work in a wide variety of medias - from hand-drawn graphics, to linocut prints, to textiles and metalwork, brand campaigns for both digital and print, and, now, LAND even has their own line of limited-edition clothing.

In their own words, LAND is, "[A] house of art, design and thought: a collaboration between American artists and designers, Caleb Owen Everitt and Ryan Rhodes. Through an exploration of typography, iconography, and arrangement of materials, we demonstrate a way of working that transcends a style or time with regard to the art of communication."

Honesty through Imperfection

What inspires us most about this dynamic design duo is their collaborative process and their strong emphasis on how the imperfections of handmade art can bring an honesty and originality to modern graphic design and branding.

Caleb and Ryan have described art as the main source of their inspiration, with their 'sweet spot' being the process of blurring art with design to bring 'feeling' into each of their projects.  When asked about the difference between 'art' and 'design,' the LAND creatives have developed an answer that is both simple and profound, 'art is selfish, design is accommodating.' 

Reclaiming The Past, Always Moving Forward

In an interview with Urban Outfitters, LAND described their process of looking to the past for inspiration in their work: "Most of the type we create is hand done or inspired by historical typography. From old books and signs to hobo scribbles, type that was created by a hand or a machine just feels better than a more modern, digital font. It's more fun to create something custom, or that feels like it came from a real place before you and I were born and will be here after we're dead."

Past LAND Clients Include: Ace Hotel, Deus Ex Machina, Falcon Motorcycles, Levi's, Monster Children, Nike, Patagonia, Poler, Stag Provisions, West America, Woolrich. You can see a longer list here.

Special thanks to LAND for the use of their imagery. All art and design work is the (C) property of www.workbyland.com. Used here with permission.

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At work in the LAND Studio.  Photo by Chelsea Fullerton  for Urban Outfitters.

At work in the LAND Studio. Photo by Chelsea Fullerton for Urban Outfitters.

At work in the LAND studio, Austin, Texas.  Photo by Bill Sallans.

At work in the LAND studio, Austin, Texas. Photo by Bill Sallans.

At work in the LAND studio, Austin, Texas.  Photo by Bill Sallans.

At work in the LAND studio, Austin, Texas. Photo by Bill Sallans.

Taking a break in the LAND studio, Austin, Texas.  Photo by Bill Sallans.

Taking a break in the LAND studio, Austin, Texas. Photo by Bill Sallans.

The Ming: Bryan Nash Gill + The Hudson Company

Artist Bryan Nash Gill working on 'The Ming' at The Hudson Company's Brooklyn Showroom, April 2013.

Artist Bryan Nash Gill working on 'The Ming' at The Hudson Company's Brooklyn Showroom, April 2013.

‘The best art is simple, direct, and resonates without explanation. It is connected, simply, to the way things are.’ Curator and friend of the artist, Steven Holmes

Simple. Direct. Resonant. If there was ever an artist and craftsman whose work was powerful through its simplicity - it was prolific sculptor, painter, and printmaker Bryan Nash Gill (1961 - 2013).

For three days in April 2013, The Hudson Company was proud to collaborate with and host Bryan in our Brooklyn showroom, where he created the extraordinary ‘Ming’ duo-tone woodcut print. At sixteen feet in length, the ‘Ming’ became not only Bryan’s largest ever woodcut print, but also the last print he would make before his unexpected death in May of that year.

This unique collaboration was born after The Hudson Company acquired a hardwood beam originating from a temple from the Ming Dynasty of China (14th - 17th centuries). As long time admirers of Bryan’s work, we wondered what stories he might be able to draw out of such a venerable artifact; what history the grain and knots of the ancient beam could reveal?

With his signature passion for exploration, Bryan applied his creative process to the ‘Ming’ project with a childlike excitement. During those three days, Bryan described what drove him to continually experiment and develop his craft: ‘...it’s a process of discovery, a process of learning, a process of putting yourself on the edge and kind of having the courage to go forth and see what happens, and learn from the process.’

At the end of his three days of ‘discovery’ at The Hudson Company showroom, Bryan produced a large-scale print that is both beautiful and surprising. Far removed from its place and era and utility of origin, ‘The Ming’ shows us a new perspective on the patterns of life encapsulated in the lines and layers of wood. Like a massive fingerprint from a distant time and place, ‘The Ming,’ like all of Bryan’s woodcuts, draws viewers into the very heart of wood - past it’s surface and color and hardness - to the nucleus of it’s identity.

Steven Holmes describes the woodcuts of Bryan Nash Gill as a way to, ‘participate in historically anchored beauty,’ by understanding wood, ‘not as an object, but as a verb.’ Today, ‘The Ming’ hangs proudly in The Hudson Company showroom as a symbol of the new perspectives that can be gained from reimagining historical artifacts. It hangs as a tribute to our friend Bryan. It hangs as an example of beautiful craftsmanship and innovative vision. It hangs as a reminder of the resonance that comes from simple beauty found in the way things are.

Watch the video below to see Bryan at work on The Ming in The Hudson Company's Brooklyn Showroom, in April 2013.