Many forms of bias are found in cartography, ranging back to the Middle Ages. Cartographers and mapmakers consciously and unconsciously alter and influence maps and their interpretation. Communist parties mapped out conflicts one-sided, royal families were glorified, subjective and suggestive symbols indicated military deployment, and Biblical information was cited to spread ideology and pass on history.
This project is an attempt to disregard the cartographer’s influence by stimulating people to understand conflicts better and thereby formulate an authentic opinion. Layering subjective information into the dynamic interface allows the spectator to explore the subjective statements and identify contradiction.
For a group exhibition at Museum Meermanno in The Hague, I collaborated with Kylièn Sarino Bergh to research the language that is used to teach about our society and democracy. The visual analysis aims to show that the indiscreet application of imagery does not contribute to the preparation of future participants of our democratic society but rather stigmatises the very same topics it aims to represent.
People who are in regular contact with conflict have to deal with existentialist choices on a regular basis. In existentialism, the decisions that one makes directly forms their identity, meaning that what someone chooses to do, or not, affects who they are.
For example, Jean-Paul Sartre wrote about a hero who made himself a hero, and a coward who made himself a coward. This project looks at how identity is presented in conflict areas and shifts the original presentation with the metadata of acts that had already happened in a conflict. With the patches mankind literally carries their choices on their shoulders.
This is an experiment of reproduction with typefaces based on Gregor Mendel's cross-breeding experiments. The experiment identified four different groups of individual letters ranging from recessive to dominant.
The starting point for this project was a collection of twenty books that all shared a common theme: mobility. With over four thousand pages between them, the question of how to deal with large amounts of information quickly arose.
The answer was found in digital code that allowed for textual data mining, and which was also used to apply order and structure to this book. Within those four thousand pages of text, each discussing pressing matters at length, we found the most important information to be the questions that these books ask, as they stimulate critical thinking and reflecting.
The questions that are gathered in this book are the product of digitally “scraping” the twenty books. The resulting questions were categorised and analysed by the importance of certain parts, words, and notions within the texts. Therefore, the themes ultimately became the pillars and binding factors for categorizing the questions on a page or spread.
The book is a physical copy of the online marketplace HANSA Market where all types of items (Drugs, Lab Supplies, Digital Goods, Services, Counterfeits, Fraud Related, Security & Hosting) can be bought, mostly for illegal purposes. The aim of this project is to expose the reader to a 'dark web' marketplace, unknown to most, which is hard, but not impossible, to find, especially when one knows where to look. A book format was chosen to give the physical manifestation a similar degree of find-ability– so the printed version of HANSA Market is out there, on the shelves, hard to find, but not impossible to find, especially when one knows where to look.
Twelve photos were shot in twelve hours in the Zagora Desert, Morocco. Each photograph is printed on a sheet that – when folded – counts twelve pages. Thus, the twelve segments display an overview of that twelve hour period. This overview goes together well with the grainy effect of the Risograph. Within the book, a paradox is presented: you may be overwhelmed by everything you see, yet it is nothing.
The text The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction by Walter Benjamin poses a typographical challenge, as it comes with both short and long footnotes. The act of reproducing played a major role in the production of this book.
We designed a stamp that marked Johannes Gutenberg’s date of death and placed it in a wide collection of books from the Royal Academy of Arts library, as the last date on the stamp cards. In this way, we honoured his life in a subtle way, without affecting the actual book.
The stamp is a way to put Gutenberg’s fingerprint on every book and reference the printing press as well as the old way to remember return dates. It’s an ode to the man and his brilliant invention that should be recognised by everyone who reads a book.
Dùn is a condensed and thin typeface with sharp and strict but precise elements. Supported in Latin Western European language
Franz Josef Land is an archipelago located in the Russian Arctic sea. It consists of 191 islands, mostly covered in ice and snow, and is only inhabited by 11 people. We reached out to Maria Gavrilo, who is one of the 11 inhabitants on Franz Josef Island, but without success. However, other mystical stories and tidbits of information, clearly linked to these icy islands, started to appear on the internet and kept us curious. We saw it as our task to discover, collect, and archive these clues to finally reconstruct and narrate what had been lost. The final output of this process is a series of fictional audio stories, which quite possible occurred on this mysterious place.
The Royal Chess Club is a chess night held once a month at the Royal Academy of Arts in The Hague. It is an open Graphic Design Olympics for fresh and progressive Individuals: "As graphic designers and visual researchers, we have to fight against each other in chess." There are also "Listen and Play” lectures by and for students.
* With Melissa van Diest, Cyanne van den Houten, Maxime Matias, Tereza Rullerova, Ott Kagovere, Maria Muuk, Eva Rank, Nathan Tulve and Thijmen van Brunschot.
According to lyrics/poems in “The Banks of Newfoundland” numerous sailors (possible fictional characters) have suffered on the banks of Newfoundland. This installation is a romantic protest for those sailors that suffered according to these texts. Multiple elements such as seawater, a moving image, sounds of the sea, and protest signs are placed in one space, confronting them with each other.
My name is Thijmen van Brunschot. I'm a graphic designer with interest in design research, typography, code & data. Mostly, my work has an analytical and systematic approach, and combines new technologies and physical elements.
Through my work, I confront, reflect, provoke and/or communicate social matters, ranging from responsibility in cartography to other functionalities for blockchain technology. I recently graduated (with distinction) a BA in Graphic Design at The Royal Academy of Arts in The Hague.
Projects vary from interactive installations, to generated love poems, from researching visual language that is used to teach about our society and democracy, to cross-breeding typographical experiments, from provoking patches to a script that gathers questions only.