Q & A: Nedjeljko Špoljar
"I'm not sure what's about to be a next big thing, but I'd like to see comeback of good, beautiful, well-proportioned and fine-tuned typography, and abandonment of this tiring deliberate-ugliness/crudeness, non-design trend." What was your main motif for coming to Ljubljana as a jury member and lecturer of the 6th BSVC? Meeting the respected colleagues, enjoying visiting Ljubljana again and being involved in judging great design work. How could I say no to that?
Do you know (any) Slovene designers (or Slovene design)? Although I'm not an expert, I am an admirer of Slovenian advertising and design ever since the begining of my career, as I was always somehow connected to it — and I know Slovenia has a tradition of great and successful design. It was very inspiring to look across the border, participate in exhibitions and festivals, and meet the colleagues. One of the Slovenian designers is my good friend, I've been introduced to a few more and have seen magnificent work of several others, too. However, I can't say I know current Slovenian design scene very well, as there are many young and emerging designers — and I certainly expect to see a lot of great work.
What do see as the most important upcoming design trend? I'm not sure what's about to be a next big thing, but I'd like to see comeback of good, beautiful, well-proportioned and fine-tuned typography, and abandonment of this tiring deliberate-ugliness/crudeness, non-design trend. Perhaps it makes sense in well-designed societies where everything is neat, nice and beautiful, but in still-developing countries (as Croatia, for instance) it simply doesn't work.
What was (in your opinion) your most influential design so far? I honestly don't think anything is exactly 'influential'. Perhaps I'm hard on myself or it's because I'm usually not completely satisfied with most of the work I finish... OK, there were some wow moments, but rarely anything is close enough to the perfection I'm trying to achieve. If I had to choose, I'd say we made pretty consistent body of work for museums and galleries which I believe raised the bar for such design within local boundaries. We made some successful annual reports and identities, too. Also, we made quite noticed work with our paper promotional design for ArjoWiggins' local distributor — if nothing else, it provoked a bunch of other designers trying to steal the client from us.
Ilustration: Robert Ilovar, IlovarStritar