In our AW 2019/20 trend Vibe, we charted the development of a visual message that takes inspiration from web surfing, playing with multiple, random references that veer from Pop Art to skate boarding.
It’s an interesting exercise in the sometimes-surreal randomness of web surfing to take a look at your browsing history. The visual messages are often a confused and chaotic blend of Instagram images, links that take you down rabbit holes to celebrity misfortune, YouTube tutorials and cat videos. There may be no common thread but if these fractured and sometimes chaotic images are drawn together, the results can be surprisingly inspirational.
Taking a lead from graffiti, which often brings unlikely imagery into one space, jostling for attention, multiple inspirations are layered one on another. Pop Art too has that sense of visual immediacy required to make an impact on butterfly minds. This is a natural story to mix and match, keeping control within a fairly narrow colour grouping, an approach adopted by the Hashtag, Z, The Look and POP prints, along with the Dynamite wall chart, Stripey Circle Redy Black Yellow and Pop Bottles cushions, all from Surface View.
Playfulness and a lightness of touch is also important, as with Paris Essex’s self-named Crazy Blankets including Bunny Stripe, complete with hidden bunny ears. Often raucous humour is part of the remit for Seletti; on the brand’s stand at Maison & Objet this year, there was an onslaught of diverse and self-referential images, all with tongue firmly held in cheek the best of which was a woman being attacked by old school telephones.
The fractured, unexpected style seen at Seletti is also explored in a more ethereal way by Domestic with images cut and pasted from multiple diverse and often unexpected sources matched together to create powerful images for Elisabeth Arkipoff’s scenic wallpaper landscape.
Doodles and repeat images also feature here, again for their immediacy and random nature, perfectly realised by Petite Friture’s Jetlag wallpaper, designed by Lisa Laubreaux, with homage paid to artist Keith Haring’s brush strokes and the Memphis Group’s spirit and animation.
Wall & Decò plays with dramatic repeats in a wallpaper designed by Frederico Pepe, where, intersecting faces produce a slightly unnerving effect. The decorative papers at Milanese stationery brand Write Sketch & are pitch perfect, combining multiple and often witty elements layered and apparently random, yet inspired when it comes to the interplay of different colours.
And finally, there is room too for highly animated graphic patterns, designed to encourage imaginations to run wild. Cartoon-like stories, densely detailed and multi-coloured, fit with this story, as seen with Wallsauce’s made-to-measure wall mural, Times Square, New York. This style of story telling graphics also influences skateboarding, as referenced by Nubie for its board themed wallpaper.
Image credits from top:
This feature first appeared in MIX Magazine issue 51.