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The New New Age


New Ageism emerged in the late 60’s: a spiritual movement defined by an introduction of eastern culture to the west. It could be linked with resistance to the Vietnam war as well as ‘the war on drugs’, offering a peaceful alternative to the mainstream attitude at the time. Typical themes, borrowed from Buddhism and Hinduism, include a holistic world view, mindfulness and compassion. In 2015 we’re beginning to see these values rise again and with them; the visual themes of the time. Colourpsychedeliahand drawn lettering and a freedom to experiment all play their part. Designer Leif Podhajsky is embracing this approach. Unity (below) shows his ability to produce work free of a brief, clearly representative of holistic virtues: the work is sold of it’s own merit. Though most of Podhajsky’s work is commissioned for record sleeves, as above, for Tame Impala’s ‘Why Wont You Make Up Your Mind’.


Mysticism and mythology are other key themes, here evidenced in Roland Grabkowski’s work ‘Player‘ (below). Intricate detail and bold use of colour contribute to Grabkowski’s particular interpretation of the style.

One trend theorist explains:
“There are so many scary, unpredictable, unpleasant and all too real things going on at the moment that people are jumping at the first opportunity to escape any or all of it. They are bailing out and entering fantasies as a temporary fix”

– Jeffrey Miller
These Images provide a release; both for the artist and the audience. Sitting for hours intricately crafting in pen and ink or staring off into an imagined landscape.
On the more commercial side of things, Leslie David applied her mixed media technique to Lancōme’s new image treatment (below). The mixing of colourfreeform shaping and hand-lettering with the addition of a ‘cut-and-stick’, collage technique contribute to a unique incarnation of the New Age style.
56c69527-3a07-44bd-9a2e-56d4896897ddIt’s increasingly difficult to speak to millennials, trends such as the New New Age forever change, flex, come and go. Reaction times have to be fast, and output must be genuine, not forced. Minnoni’s SS15 campaign is a good example of how it’s done right (below).

Thanks for reading.

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