Knowing the ABC of something means knowing its foundations. "Dotting your 'i's” means being accurate. Being "illiterate", metaphorically speaking, means being ignorant of a certain field of knowledge. Alphabets are usually something you learn, but type designers bring them to life: they blow a vital spark into the letters to make the characters unique, memorable and legendary. Alessandro Costariol is a graphic designer who over the years has dedicated himself to that branch of graphic design which deals with drawing alphabetic characters: type design. An Industrial Design graduate of the Sapienza University of Rome, from 2001 to 2004 he worked for several agencies in Milan and participated in projects for Wallpaper and Boffi. In 2006 he started his own studio and worked freelance for agencies and brands such as Landor and Robilant Associates. Among the customers for whom he was a consultant were Fritz Hansen, Lea Ceramica and Arpa Industriale. In New York, in 2012, he worked with the Giovanni Bianco agency on projects for clients such as Versace, Ermenegildo Zegna and Madonna.
Costariol deals with corporate graphics, designs brands and works for the construction of the visual identities of large companies in various sectors. His work often focuses on the design of letters and characters because they are one of the vital elements of visual identity. This can mean the design of a single word or even of an entire alphabet. As he says, "Graphic design is letters – everything else is just decoration."
Among the other types of work he does – that not strictly related to graphic design - Alessandro Costariol has also participated in the architectural firm DWA's project Oltredove. The idea was to produce objects at the intersection of art and design which played with the ambiguity of time, so that shapes, lines and structures seemed archaeological finds which, rather than being exhumed from a remote past, came from the distant future where technology no longer existed.
The story of Alessandro Costariol has been written by Francesco Longo, writer