Partner DJ Stout and designer Barrett Fry in Pentagram’s Austin office have designed a new sign and additional branding materials for the second location of Lucy’s Fried Chicken on Burnet Road. The sign Stout and Fry created for the original South Congress Avenue restaurant in 2012 featured a dark-haired Lucy holding a chicken leg and kicking one of her own human legs through the magic of old-school neon animation. The Pentagram team worked with Austin’s retro-sign guru Evan Voyles on that sign and the new one, which features a sassy redhead. Owner James Holmes named the restaurant after his grandmother who taught him how to make fried chicken.
“At first he was thinking it would just be the exact same sign,” says Stout. “But we suggested introducing a new girl, maybe her sister, for the second location. This time Lucy’s holding a bucket of chicken and wearing a blue dress with white polka-dots.”
Continue reading “There’s a New Girl in Town”
Pecha Kucha, which means “chit chat” in Japanese, is an evening of creative inspiration originally imported from Tokyo in 2003. Currently there are over 700 chapters in cities all over the world. The challenging Pecha Kucha format involves 10 local speakers chosen from a variety of disciplines who are allowed 20 slides a piece set on a timer of 20 seconds per slide. The fast-paced “20 X 20″ presentations, just over six minutes per person, make for a thoroughly entertaining night of insight, artistry and passion. The Austin chapter was founded by Herman Dyal and Carla Fraser, and Lana McGilvray and Pentagram partner DJ Stout took over as directors in 2011.
Stout and his colleague Stu Taylor at Pentagram’s Austin office started designing original posters for the events with Pecha Kucha volume 10, which was staged at a rock ‘n’ roll hot rod customizing garage called the Austin Speed Shop, and they have now completed the poster for Pecha Kucha 18, to be held this week at the Livestrong headquarters in East Austin. Over time the commemorative silk-screened posters, which always feature the names of the 10 guest presenters, have become collectors’ items in Austin.
One of the traditions of Pecha Kucha is that each event is held at a different location, often at unique and off-beat places. Some of the previous Austin venues have included an abandoned power station, a modern furniture showroom, a former Goodwill Industries building, a vintage theater at a Freemason’s lodge, a millworks, an old office supply warehouse, an advertising agency’s lobby, the Austin City Limits sound stage, under a tent pitched in the parking lot of Pentagram Austin’s offices, and even a downtown alley.
Pecha Kucha 18, which will be held this Thursday, November 21 at 8:20 PM, at the Livestrong Foundation headquarters, is part of the annual week-long E.A.S.T. (East Austin Studio Tour) event. The last several Pecha Kucha events held during E.A.S.T. were in old abandoned buildings, so McGilvray and Stout and their curatorial board thought it would be an interesting change of pace to stage Pecha Kucha 18 in Livestrong’s beautiful, refurbished building designed by Lake/Flato Architects.
“Obviously the former Lance Armstrong Foundation’s controversial namesake has fallen from grace, but one of our upcoming presenters, who has endured a life-changing cancer scare themselves, is going to talk about the assistance and support they recently got from the Livestrong Foundation,” says Stout. “I guess you could say that Livestrong is still living strong for a lot of people.”
The Pecha Kucha Austin 18 roster of speakers includes radio personality John L. Hanson Jr. (aka John E. Dee “The Black Prince”), filmmaker and photographer Andrew Shapter, vintage motorcycle guru Alan Stulberg, abstract painter Court Lurie, hot-rod portraitist George Brainard, singer-songwriter Carrie Rodriguez, taco connoisseur Mando Rayo, sign-painter Joe Swec, the creators of the THIRST project, and the legendary Texas artist Bob “Daddy-O” Wade.
Pentagram Partner DJ Stout and designer Carla Delgado in our Austin office have designed World Wildlife magazine, a new publication for the World Wildlife Fund based in Washington, DC. The World Wildlife Fund—the group with the iconic Panda logo—is the world’s leading conservation organization. The WWF works in 100 countries and is supported by 1.2 million members in the United States and close to 5 million around the world. WWF’s unique way of working combines global reach with a foundation in science, involves action at every level from local to international, and ensures the delivery of innovative solutions that meet the needs of both people and nature.
When the WWF started envisioning World Wildlife magazine they knew they wanted to find new ways to inspire their members and partners, connect them to nature, and bring them closer to their conservation work through vivid storytelling, compelling photography and first-class design. They reached out to Pentagram Austin at the beginning of the year and the first issue of World Wildlife debuted last month. In addition to the flagship print publication, Stout and Delgado designed a smaller digest of the magazine that includes a collectible wildlife poster that can be pulled out and framed or hung on the refrigerator, and Associate partner Julie Savasky, with Hunter Cross, created a tablet app adaptation of the magazine.
Continue reading “New Work: World Wildlife Magazine”
Pentagram has just completed a comprehensive rebranding of the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. The new look was unveiled to the public in time for the grand opening of the Arboretum’s new Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden last weekend. Partner DJ Stout, Associate Julie Savasky and designer Carla Delgado in Pentagram’s Austin office teamed up on the project, which includes a new identity, revamped print collateral and a completely overhauled website. The Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden, a sprawling 66-acre natural wonderland on the shores of White Rock Lake, is a much beloved Dallas institution and a hub of activity for the city.
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Quick Link: DJ Stout to Speak at LSU College of Art + Design
The Hockaday School in Dallas was founded by Ela Hockaday in 1913 and has become one of the premier all-girl preparatory schools in the Southwest. Now an ambitious new book, The Hockaday School: An Anthology of Voices and Views 1913–2013, commemorating the institution’s 100-year anniversary, has been designed and produced by Pentagram Austin. The oversized coffee-table book, nearly 400 pages and heavier than most of the pre-K to 12th grade girls who attend the day and boarding school, was designed by Pentagram Associate Julie Savasky with Partner DJ Stout.
Continue reading “New Work: The Hockaday School Centennial Book”
Partner DJ Stout and designer Stu Taylor in Pentagram’s Austin office have designed a new CD package, posters and a lyric book for Austin-based musician Darden Smith. The multi-talented singer-songwriter’s newest release on Compass Records, Love Calling, features a not-so-loving image of a woman strapped to a large wooden wheel with multiple swords protruding from her back. “Obviously this album features love songs,” says Stout, “but as everyone knows, there’s a very thin line between love and hate.”
Included with the collection of love ballads is a song called “Angel Flight” that Smith wrote in 2009 with his friend Radney Foster. The song, which became a radio and Internet sensation, honors the military pilots who fly the planes that bring fallen soldiers home. That song gave Smith the idea for his successful Songwriting with Soldiers program, established in 2012, where the master songwriter works with veterans suffering from PTSD and other injuries. “The album also features a song about jealous love called ‘I Smell Smoke,’ and ‘Baltimore’ is a dark tale about shattered love and salvation,” says Stout, “so the songs aren’t all lovey-dovey. ‘Angel Flight’ is about the heart-wrenching consequences of war, so the violent image of the angelic-looking woman with the traditional weapons of warfare stuck in her back seemed to me to be an appropriate symbol for this collection of songs.”
For local hero Smith, who’s been writing songs and performing for 40 years, Love Calling opens a new chapter in the artist’s prolific career and circles back to his musical roots. “And that’s where the symbolism of the big wooden wheel on the cover comes into play,” says Stout. “Darden is a hard worker and he’s had his fair share of high points and low, both in music and love.”
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The second edition of EXEL, the annual research magazine published by Drexel University in Philadelphia, began hitting mailboxes earlier this month. The new 2013 issue was designed and produced by partner DJ Stout and lead designer Carla Delgado in Pentagram’s Austin office, following their successful design of the magazine’s inaugural issue in 2012.
The latest incarnation of the award-winning publication features an eye-catching school of fish swimming about on its cover. The magazine’s distinctive cover format unfolds to reveal the word DREXEL, a large graphic letter “X” and 23 exotic fish representing a sampling of species native to Brazil’s imperiled Xingu River, including Peckoltia sabaji, named after Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University Ichthyology Collection Manager Mark Sabaj Perez. Like the premier issue, the second edition of EXEL features a wide array of visually dynamic scientific photography, illustration and infographics used in modern, inventive layouts to express Drexel’s rich research narratives. “Our emphasis is on featuring the research—the actual subject matter of the research—not just the researchers,” says Stout. “Science and research is inherently interesting. All a designer needs to do is find the right image and get the hell out of the way.”
Continue reading “Update: Drexel University’s EXEL Magazine”
The Austin Museum of Art (AMOA) and Arthouse, Austin’s contemporary art museum, merged in 2011 and became AMOA-Arthouse. That unwieldy name and the resulting identity, basically the two original logos shoved uncomfortably together, just added to the general confusion and misconceptions about the new entity. The museum’s awkward name and logo-sandwich, the unfortunate product of a shotgun wedding, just underscored the fact that it used to be two organizations. It didn’t help things that the combined visual arts institutions were housed under two separate roofs in different parts of the city. After the merger AMOA, which had been mostly downtown for several years, moved back into an old stately lakeside villa called Laguna Gloria and Arthouse stayed in the Jones Center, a modern revamped theater on 7th Street and Congress Avenue downtown. Last January the museum’s new executive director, Louis Grachos, enlisted Pentagram to help rename AMOA-Arthouse and to develop an original brand identity that expressed his ambitious vision for the new museum. The chosen name, The Contemporary Austin, and its sleek new look were unveiled for the first time to the public on July 18th.
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Pentagram’s DJ Stout and his team at the Austin office rebranded Maudie’s Tex-Mex three years ago and have continued working with the iconic local restaurant chain ever since. Maudie’s, which began as a tiny Mexican food cafe in a strip-mall shopping center not far from the Austin office, has now expanded to six locations. Tex-Mex is an original Texas invention, a close cousin to the traditional cuisine of the Lone Star State’s neighbor to the south, but a truly unique culinary art all its own. Maudie’s has continued the Tex-Mex tradition but with a very “Austin” twist: It is the only all-natural Tex-Mex restaurant in the region. Unlike its Mexican brethren, Maudie’s uses all-natural beef and chicken and organic eggs. Maudie’s has mastered the art of Tex-Mex, and Pentagram has mastered the art of Maudie’s.
Continue reading “An Extra Helping of Maudie’s”