We recently caught up with Scott Bonanno (Managing Director) Andrew Fiscalini (Senior Designer) at Liquorice Studio to talk design, technology & jazz.
Can you tell us a bit about Liquorice, your connection to the Festival & the creative community in Melbourne?
Scott: Liquorice is an agency of creatives, strategists & digital experts. Our aim to make incredible things by bringing together the best minds in branding and technology. We work with a wide range of clients nationwide including a number in the Melbourne arts community: Malthouse Theatre, Abbotsford Convent and sketch comedy troupe Aunty Donna. This is our 4th year working with MIJF on the festival identity and marketing rollout, and the second year we’ve developed the Festival website. 2015 saw a refresh of the website reflective of the festival’s growing involvement in the digital space.
What are you greatest design influences?
Andrew: Crisp, clean order. Without a doubt Josef Müller-Brockmann and the Swiss Style head any design influences I have. It's a challenge to do well within today’s constraints but something that is hugely satisfying.
In a jazz connection the LP covers of Blue Note through the 50's and 60's as well as later labels like ECM and Factory also influence my work. Blue Note were among the pioneers of the LP cover and they made it their own during that time. Those record jackets resonate as well today as they did straight off the press.
How did this year’s design concept come about?
Andrew: The previous three festivals dealt with various aspects of live jazz - the audience, the player and the language. It was time this year to focus on the actual sound of jazz itself. Seeing this sound as a shifting and flowing landscape, it brought in to play other aspects of Liquorice. The digital team helped in giving the concept movement as well as developing an all-important tool to generate different waveforms in all matter of styles and complexities. Just like the jazz it represents.
Where do you get creative inspiration from?
Andrew: Not so much from within design as just looking at what's around me and taking it onboard. That, and music. Music has always played a big part in any conceptual work and often frees me up for ideas and direction to take shape. From thunderous drone to minimal jazz - it all works for me.
What’s your connection to jazz?
Andrew: I'm certainly no jazz aficionado, but it certainly remains in high rotation in one form or another - classic players like Coltrane, Davis and the ever cosmic Sun Ra mixed with the experimental and free form (what happened to the Underground part of the Festival?). Not to mention my partner often plays saxophone at home... so, jazz is never far away.
What other projects are in the pipeline?
Scott: We are launching a software product called DOKIO – a cloud based product for creating and managing brand communications. It’s a bit of a game changer– launching this month (TAKING OVER THE WORLD). We’re also launching our first iPad app this year for Inside Story and working on a TVC.
What are you looking forward to most at this year’s Festival?
Scott: Spending time at the much-loved Bennett's Lane - the last MIJF festival that this notorious Jazz bar will be open. Also looking forward to attending our Sponsored event - The Bad Plus with the Liquorice crew. It's always a great night and nice to enjoy the festival as a team.
Andrew: Heading along to see a free form jazz great in Pharoah Sanders which will be great, but I'm also excited to see Australian jazz stalwart Allan Browne on the festival stage.