Poster 2017: The New Design
Interview with Designer Olimpia Zagnoli
Olimpia Zagnoli (© Tamu McPherson)
Since the redesign 2012, a pair of sunglasses have been the symbol for the Munich film festival, an idea launched by design studio Abc&D. This year, they were able to hire renowned Italian artist Olimpia Zagnoli, who has designed covers for New York Times Magazine, The New Yorker, and La Repubblica as well as for Google and Taschen Publishing.
Zagnoli’s posters feature four characters from classic films wearing their trademark sunglasses.
FILMFEST MÜNCHEN spoke with Olimpia Zagnoli about the 2017 poster:
How come you chose to illustrate the poster for FILMFEST MÜNCHEN?
Because I enjoy movies as a complex form of creative expression and I find film festivals to be interesting occasions for people to meet and talk about their feelings in the shape of comments to the movies they’ve seen.
How did you approach the idea “film characters wearing sunglasses”?
I received a very clear brief to put the focus on one of my frequently-drawn accessories: the sunglasses. So I couldn’t be happier.
What does your work stand for? What does illustrating mean to you?
It’s creating a parallel world that speaks a universal language that anybody can understand even if they live in one of the other infinite parallel worlds.
Where do you take the inspiration for your illustrations from?
All sorts of things: supermarkets, Proust, old textiles, and Coca Cola.
In an interview you said, as an illustrator you see yourself as a communicator? Can you elaborate?
I create images that trigger a feeling, an emotion, a reaction, a concept or nothing at all. Therefore, I guess I use my visual vocabulary to communicate something to someone.
Very often you draw women in your illustrations. Why?
Because I’m a woman myself and it’s easier for me to identify with a situation experienced by a woman rather than someone else. I know exactly how a woman feels when she jumps around on her bed excited about having achieved something she wanted with all her heart. I can’t say the same about men or cats. Even though I assume it would make them feel pretty good too.
Your illustrations show rather big shapes. However, many of your illustrations include small striking details. For example, on the FILMFEST MÜNCHEN posters you included an earring etc. Why? What do these details tell us?
I like to create big shapes and enrich them with small decorations or patterns as I think they add more character to the characters. It shows a little bit more of their intimate choices and their personality.