During Expo 2015 in Milan it was also presented an application that I developed with CRS4 (Samuel Iacolina, Pietro Zanarini, Carlino Casari). CRS4 finally makes interactive my digital typographic rugs, as I had imagined when I designed them. This app, named Sardinia Typestry (you can try it here) has become the digital gadget for Sardinia. It proposes, with a simple touch, an infinite combination of colours, randomly alternating upper and lower case of Battoro and PB1. Everyone can enter his name and the application returns infinite tapestries, vertically readable. Here are shown some combinations made digiting my name on the app.
During the Expo Milano 2015, two groups from DADU Alghero (coordinated by Nicolò Ceccarelli, with Marco Sironi and Attilio Baghino) and DICAAR Cagliari (coordinated by me) have developed the exhibit design of the Autonomous Region of Sardinia pavilion during the week dedicated to the island. We meet very strong constraints: everything had to be assembled and dismantled in six hours, had to be reusable, must coexist with many fixed and unchangeable parts. Sardinia Dingbats are used in a stencil version for a specially designed shelter entrance, for backlight walls and to drill stools, inside which essences were inserted. On the walls, a horizontal slot contained a smelling Helichrysum. The rectangular module guided the conceptualization of the sea, through a suspended installation inspired by Calder’s mobiles. The central video wall formed colorful tapestries, animated by the group of Alghero, who also created the movies and the music that flowed on the monitors. Daniela Ducato contributed with textural natural panels, used as artworks on the walls. A golden female note was added by Cristiana Collu, which included hundreds of elegantly serial cowbells. During the inauguration, Roberto Petza has proposed again the food carpet with great success.
In the summer of 2015, the Autonomous Region of Sardinia asked two groups from the Departments of Architecture of the Universities of Sassari and Cagliari – the first one coordinated by Nicolò Ceccarelli, the second by me – to develop a new visual identity of the island for Expo Milano 2015. This identity will become the visual spine of the communication strategy of Sardinia in the coming years. First I designed a set of typefaces with a strong local identity. I called them Bàttoro (after the name of the traditional weaving from which they take inspiration) and PB1 (as pibione, the Sardinian word for the weaving dot). The equation pixel = pibione established the modular and serial way of the graphic research. The created fonts are decorative, good for headlines and logos or, like you can see, ricursive and intertwining patterns. It’s another way to get interesting typographic textures. Here is shown the claim “Sardegna isola senza fine” (Sardinia endless island), that I created as well. For longer texts, which need to be red without any difficulties, we used the Open Sans. In addition to the first two sets, I wanted a set of dingbats made up of figures of traditional Sardinian weaving, plus some new and imaginative, specifically designed. With my team of collaborators (Matteo Buccoli, Francesca Oggiano, Claudio Rossi), we designed a set of figures called Sardinia Dingbats, with which you can process virtual tapestries typing on the keyboard. The serialization of the compositions follows a way I had already studied for the typographical tapestries and these typefaces give to designers and craftsmen a powerful tool for creating ever new combinations.
I designed this carpet for a friend, a very good dentist specialized in correcting the smile of children. It was handmade by weaving cooperative Su Trobasciu in Mogoro. My friend’s family has always been involved in the distribution and marketing of catch. The carpet is a kind of family coat of arms: fish bones are recognizable, while teeth have a more abstract shape (upper and lower dental arches are spread out), either in the “free” form and with the corrective coloured brace.
For Joias I designed a sarong that revisits the traditional costume of Orgosolo. A transposition of the strong iconic tradition of inner areas of Sardinia on a typical garment of the beaches. A way to communicate identity to different and wide people, who spent their summer holidays on the Sardinian coast. Easy to carry and to pack, it can speak about our island beyond the sea of Sardinia.
When I saw my name along with many of my tutelary deities, I cannot believe it. It was a strong emotion. Francesco Dondina reserved me an immense honor. On October 14th, I will give a talk about my works in Milan, at Castello Sforzesco. Organized under the patronage of the Milan Polytechnic, AIAP, and Bauer Institute, it is part of a series of six events taking place from late September to December.
Many years ago – it was 2003 – I patented a logo that seemed a good idea. It associated emoticons to Sardinia. In fact, the sequence (:+:) could be read either as the connection of two smiley faces, both as the stylization of the coat of arms of the Four Moors, emblem of the island. Like all emoticons, it was invariant with respect to the typeface used. Anyone who wants to send a message marked Sardinia could use it as a kind of hashtag. It can be used without parentheses – at its most basic version – or within square brackets – to imitate the rectangle of the flag. And, of course, can be declined in all other variants which have inside in sequence : + : to act as a communicative bit. Today I will propose it again as a gift. I make it public because people could use it. The only restriction is that this logo can’t be used for commercial pourposes by privates, or owned by anyone (except by me, as intellectual property, of course). It can be used only as a common good. I will not keep it to myself. I want to give it to all the Sardinians and all people who love Sardinia.
The ZX Spectrum pixel font never ends to give me satisfaction. I had already used to call the weaving in some work of recent years. Since then I’ve been working to design sardinian traditional tapestries and rugs using typography. I show the last one, dedicated to the great Roberto Petza, chef of the “star” restaurant S’Apposentu, in Siddi .