FONT FREAKS M/M PARIS PROFILE. This was a piece that I wrote on MM Paris, that never saw the light of day. I can’ t remember exactly what happened. The editor went on maternity leave? The publisher pulled the story at the last minute/ Whatever. It’s a bit of stream of conciousness, because the text remains unedited (& DEF. unfinished), but these dudes are uber-clever folk and please forgove my rambling. FONT FREAKS> Respect is not a freebie in the creative world. Like military stripes, it has to be earned. Earning respect might take a day or a lifetime. For others, it might never come. To an artist, respect is worth more than money, reputation, approval or praise. It is the key for their work to be taken seriously and paves the way for career longevity. This much coveted appraisal is bestowed when an artist has the ability to create something that is completely unique, has their own voice despite criticism, trend or opposition, and packs enough creative punch to redefine a genre. Sergeant majors on the proverbial pedestal of respect, are French graphic designers/art directors M/M (Paris), whose creative spark spans the world of music, art, books and fashion. In recent years M/M have redefined the look of an icon (Paris Vogue), blurred the boundaries between graphic design and video direction (on projects for Icelandic pop-princess Bjork and uber-brat Madonna), put fine art back into fashion (in campaigns for Balenciaga, Yohji Yamamoto, Calvin Klein, Louis Vuitton and the like) and closed the gap between photography, art and design with a list which reads like a who’s-who.
M/M’S slightly disturbing work is a fusion of fine art and cyber space; schizophrenic handi-crafts and prefab computer graphics; or like being stoned and completely straight at the same time. It is identifiable by its idiosyncratic typefaces, quirky embellishments, romantic flourishes, collage and hand-drawn motifs. Blobs of paint, splotches of ink, and smudges of oil on crisp clean photographs make up the sum of its parts. M/M’s technique might be identifiable, but it is never stale as it evolves from one client and season to the next. And unlike a lot of artists M/M know when enough is enough. Their cutting edge work is never over the top.