This talk took place on Friday, June 16, 2017 in The Great Hall of The Cooper Union as part of Typographics. Special thanks to Google for their support of the 2017 video archive.
Design exists through a canvas: a page, a wall, a space. The canvas, however, is not always clearly defined. How do we use typography – the very thing that needs a canvas – to define the canvas itself? How does typography come into play in that chicken-and-egg equation? In this talk, Natasha will present a selected survey of work that explores how typography can simultaneously carve out and occupy the very canvas it inhabits.
Natasha Jen was born in Taipei, Taiwan and studied graphic design at the School of Visual Arts in New York City, where she received her BFA with Honors in 2002. She has worked at Base Design as a senior designer on fashion and brand identity projects, at 2×4, Inc. as an art director leading large-scale branding, exhibition, environmental and editorial projects, and at Stone Yamashita Partners as creative director. In July 2010, she established her own studio, Njenworks. She joined Pentagram’s New York office as partner in April 2012.
Natasha’s practice has been notable for crossing media genres, drawing on references from a diverse range of cultural, historical, aesthetic, and technological sources. Her work encompasses brand identities, environmental design, multi-scale exhibitions, signage systems, print, motion and interactive graphics, created in collaborations with universities and professional organizations, museums and galleries, and retail and fashion brands.
Her clients have included Nike, Harvard Art Museums, Guggenheim Museum/Foundation, OMA, REX, Wexner Center for the Arts, Kate Spade, Target, Puma, Kiki de Montparnasse, SoHo/Tribeca Grand Hotels, AIGA, MIT Architecture, Vitra, NYU Kids at Langone, the Slought Foundation, Tess Giberson, AIA New Practices Committee, Chanel, Nuit Blanche New York, and Prism.
She has earned a variety of awards and appeared in a number of publications, including Print Magazine, Creative Review, Metropolis, Dwell, Flaunt, Design Bureau, China Art and Design, Soda Magazine and Rosebud. She was one of the winners of Art Directors Club Young Guns 4 and served as a judge for the competition in 2007 and 2011. She has been a guest critic at the Yale University School of Art.