Graphic design has always been my passion. I was the creative director at McCann Erickson during some years, where I was mainly doing advertising. From that experience I learned that advertising was a great and funny form of communication, but not superior to the power of design.
From that thought H-57 was born in 2004, a sort of experimental lab where design, illustration and advertising were mixed together in one mission: make beautiful things which can be loved by people who liked art, design and typography. In our opinion communicating through design and illustration, instead of classic advertising is a more fascinating way of expressing an idea.
I was born in Milan and grew up here, in the historical period of brigate rosse and what we called “ lead years” (anni di piombo), a difficult period for Italy. In fact my parents taught me that life wasn’t easy and that you needed to conquer every single thing. I had the opportunity to appreciate the small things and the small conquests of every day life.
Thanks to my parents I went to the senior high school specialized in art and I’ve discovered the world of graphics, typography and logotypes, but the first “coud de foudre” I had when I discovered the Van Halen music, their first cover with that vintage logo was so incredible that I immediately understood what I wanted to be. In fact some years later I attended an academy for young designers.
The short stories were born during a collaboration with an online publishing house called firstfloorunder.com. They asked us to find funny ideas to create something expressly made for them. That’s how the short stories together with, stamps and typographic poems were born.
The first short story was about Jesus, followed by Michael Jackson. We enjoyed a lot this job because we found the stories really funny and cynic and then we did also Julius Caesar, Marie Antoinette, Napoleon, Bruce Lee and many others. The stories went round the world and were published in many creativity blogs, they brought us and to firstfloorunder a lot of visibility. It was a success.
My dream has always been to have my own graphic design studio. Since then I had a lot of funny and involving projects and then one day “ the force of typography” artwork put us in contact with Lucasfilm allowing us to realize a big charity event. Today I’m executive creative director in H-57, with skilled and very good collegues. I love my guys, they make every day this work pleasant. I’m happy.
Matteo Civaschifrom h-57 studio
*edited by Florian Bardou