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Address

50 avenue Parmentier
Paris, 75011
FR

Company Name

Agence Pierre Katz

Company Type

Design

Languages

French, English

Established In

1992

Born

1959

Email

pk@pierrekatz.com

Website

http://www.pierrekatz.com/

Graphis Archives

Biography/Work Experience

Pierre Katz was born in Paris in 1959. As a child, he was already fascinated by graphic expression and what he would call later ‘a world of signs’. His father, a doctor and insatiable art collector, and his mother, an opera singer, entertained a great number of artist friends, among whom a surrealist painter. While observing him performing an automatic drawing, young Pierre perceived for the very first time ‘the obvious gesture revealing the deep meaning, just like a natural extension of the mind’. Since then, (he was about 8), he never stopped drawing, giving free rein to his imagination and perfecting his flowing gesture in phantasmagorical arabesques. Later, his love of literature channelled his obsession with drawing. A Latinist student, passionate about languages, he was particularly interested in etymology and humanities. Going back in time, he dug into the history of printing, writing and primitive arts, back when the signs already symbolized the sensible world, transcribing the experience that all human beings have always had in common, regardless of their culture. ‘Choose a word and emphasize its meaning through a consistent graphic expression’. Pierre Katz remembers the question from the baccalaureate examination, which introduced him to the world of typography. This discipline, in the strictest sense of the term, meets Pierre Katz’s deepest aspirations as a literature lover, as an architect and as an artist. He describes it as ‘a craftsmanship of high-precision, which requires to master the shape until it perfectly and naturally matches the meaning, without any frills’. Then the drawing disappears under the letter, born from a subtle balance and yet so assertive. In his early years, Pierre Katz met Peter Knapp, former art director of Elle magazine, and the most brilliant typographers from France, America and Switzerland. He attended the Penninghen school, and made his first experiences working with Carré Noir and Desgrippes agencies. If he certainly learned a lot from these renowned influences, he was mainly motivated to follow his own personal path. As a self-taught artist in constant search, he collected many reference books about typography, explored the art of calligraphy from England to Japan, and approached humanities such as semiology, cognitive sciences and psychoanalysis. But Pierre Katz is neither a typography theorist nor an historian. He was trained in printed communication and signage, so he always considers the signs in their environment, in full connection with the time we are living in. This is why he specialized in logotypes: ‘those signs which brand the brands, revealing their identity and personality in an immediate, clear and permanent way.’ There is no ego involved, no artist’s recognizable hand: according to Pierre Katz, the ultimate logo is due to eclipse the designer and to last over time. Therefore when he creates a brand identity or a label design, his approach is aesthetic yet not ornamental: it is all about shaping the meaning and instilling some culture through a tailor-made and refined drawing. As he likes to say: ‘conciseness commands preciseness’. Pierre Katz shares his specific approach of design as a craftsmanship with his clients: they are the most prestigious luxury houses, striving for excel- lence just as he does.

Clients

Sofitel Legend Château de Pommard Dom Pérignon Moët & Chandon Hermès Alaïa Lejay Ruinart Dom Ruinart Rémy Martin Roger & Gallet Favarger Cacharel Catherine Deneuve Sonia Rykiel Le Point Thierry Mugler Marie Brizard Wine & Spirits and more

Area of Expertise

Creative Direction Brand Identity Design Typography Packaging