Why not associates

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Why not associates is a british graphic design company with global reach.

For nearly two decades, why not associates has been creating innovative work for clients large and small.

Known for pushing the boundaries!!

Why Not Associates is different. The company doesn’t have a single guiding philosophy; in fact, it specifically tries to avoid theorising about its work. Instead, it embraces change.

Once dubbed ‘the wild boys of typography’, the Why Not Associates team’s work has evolved and diversified over more than two decades. Print, motion, identity, installations, books – their work has long been a prominent part of the visual landscape. As such, the company has done much to define how we think about graphic design.

Typographic tree

Artist Gordon Young, design studio Why Not Associates, and colleagues created typographic sculptures from dead trees for the new Crawley Library in West Sussex, UK.

“The striking, cracked trees, 14 in all, are situated throughout the library building and are installed vertically, flush to the floor and ceiling to resemble supporting, structural pillars. Each tree is, in fact, a real oak trunk and displays carved passages of text from literature within the library, the typeface of each passage chosen carefully to suit the nature of the text…

The type on the trees isn’t carved but sandblasted out of the wood… “You put a kind of vinyl onto the wood and peel the cut lettering out of it,” explains (Why Not’s Andy) Altmann of the process. The idea is that the particles of grit eat into the wood but bounce off the vinyl, resulting in the ‘carved’ lettering.”


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