For Milan-based studio Dallas, typography is the foundation of graphic design

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It’s a passion that both designers are passing down to students in their respective schools in Milan. Francesco adds on this: “Being in constant contact with students allows us to continuously re-evaluate the basics of our profession and the conceptual vitality of our decisions.” Fundamentally, however, for Dallas, typography is the foundation of every project, and often, “where everything starts.” It’s part of the studio’s wider strategy to establish long term relationships with its clients, developing a number of different design solutions over time, as seen in its two-and-a-half-year-and-counting relationship with Istituto Svizzero, for example.

In other work, Dallas redesigned the contemporary art magazine Mousse, centring the visual language around the editorial content. Avoiding a purely aesthetic approach to the redesign, the founding designers created a design system which streamlines the editorial structure, in turn, giving more space to profiles and in-depth articles. “We worked a lot with a typographic framework strongly based on two typefaces, a serif by François Rappo and a sans serif by Chi-Long Trieu, who also designed the masthead of the magazine along with us,” says Kevin. “We think these articles deserve to be read and not just browsed, so all our efforts went into allowing readers to discover content in an easy and appealing way.”

Elsewhere, Dallas has been working on a monumental book design since 2016. Titled Yes Yes Yes, the studio was approached by Amedeo Martegani, a collector and owner of the the publishing house A+M Bookstore. Tasked with designing a book on his 600+ collection of alternative and underground magazines from the 60s and 70s, Francesco and Kevin were faced with the thrilling task of reliving into this mighty collection, cataloguing the collection in a designed curation. Separating the publication into three sections – full bleed colour, black and white and a series of interviews –the designers highlighted the plurality of messages and forms in this extensive document. “What was stunning to us is the creativity of the authors,” Francesco finally goes on to say, “who were by all means mostly amateurs from a graphic design standpoint, but were able to create some unique, loud and imaginative things. And to bring forward some really important themes of the time (and of now).”

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