6 things you must see in August 2015

Find inspiration in 3 exhibitions, a film, a festival and 300,000 animated films.

ITV2 idents by ManvsMachine

Commissioned to create idents for ITV’s naughty sibling ITV2, ManvsMachine took the opportunity to really have some fun. The idents feature biscuits raining down into cups of tea, a jam traffic jam and dogs dressed as dogs having a good sniff of some (you guessed it) hot dogs. You can see one above and more on ManvsMachine's site here.

They were developed to be modular so that ITV2 could use an algorithm to assemble short sections to fill the allotted time slot.

How the team repeated everyday objects to make an impact is something to take away from the project, as is their rich sonic landscape than makes the shorts a sensual, even percussive, experience when played back to back.



This vibrant, heart-warming documentary follows the life of flamboyant 93-year-old style icon Iris Apfel. Formerly an interior designer to America’s rich and famous, Iris found an unlikely second career well into her 80s when she became a muse and darling of the fashion industry, due on part to her incredible eye, completely original and often outrageous outfits, and her unconventional attitude towards beauty.

Made by the same director as cult classic Grey Gardens, Albert Maysles (who sadly passed earlier this year), the documentary is a true lesson in sensitive, well paced film-making, and it’s clear to see that Maysles developed a great rapport and level of trust with Iris and her adoring husband Carl. This film is essentially about creativity, having vision, and following your gut even if you’re doing something completely at odds with current visual trends – top notch inspiration whatever your discipline.


Interfaces at The Barbican

This three-day showcase of installations created in the first year of digital art and design 'incubator' Fish Island Labs is a must-see for anyone working in interactive design.

There's work on show from 20 artists in the foyers of The Barbican. Sentient Flux by Nicola Plant and Alexander Adderley (shown here) is a VR installation that puts you in a swirl of glowing particles that react your motion.

BIM by Martin Collins and Tom Szirtes is an facial recognition-based interactive portrait who becomes happier the more you talk to her – or bored if you ignore her. See BIM in action here.

barbican.org.uk, fishislandlabs.com

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Everything is Architecture: Bau Magazine from the 60s and 70s

This ICA show presents the first UK survey of Vienna-based architectural magazine Bau. Working in a time of great innovation in European architecture, Bau matched this purple patch with an uncompromising and playful approach to editorial design, considering Che Guevara, a lipstick and performances of the Viennese Actionist Otto Mühl as worthy cover images.

The design team showed enormous lateral thinking, drew from pop culture and art, broke the rules and did not patronise their readers with obvious visuals. Until 27 September.


Geta Br?tescu at Tate Liverpool

Considered one of the most important artists of the Romanian avant-garde of the 1960s and 1970s, Geta Br?tescu’s exhibition at the Tate Liverpool (until 18 October) is essential for anyone interested in colour.

Often working in textiles or paper collage, Br?tescu’s Vestigii series collides scraps of fabric together to create inspiring palettes of texture and colour. This show is anyone interested in mark-making, pattern or surface design.


Safari Festival

Based in Shoreditch on 22 August, this one-day festival run by Breakdown Press brings together some of the most exciting cartoonists, artists, illustrators and designers working in contemporary comics.

Unlike the Nobrow-run ELCAF, the emphasis is less on the cutesy and more on alternative, political charged and left-field storytelling. Highlights include Breakdown’s own Joe Kessler, Esther McManus, James Jarvis, Will Sweeny and Decadence Comics.


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