Psst—don’t miss the exciting news about the PRINT Regional Design Awards at the bottom of this page!
PRINT’s latest Designer of the Week, Gustavo Greco, is owner of Greco Design, a graphic design consultancy he hopes to soon expand internationally. The Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil–based studio specializes in visual identity as well as editorial and wayfinding design—and the talented creatives there have picked up numerous awards from the likes of D&AD, Red Dot Design Award, London International Awards and our very own HOW and PRINT.
photo by Weber Padua
Name: Gustavo Greco
Name of Studio: Greco Design
Location: Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil
How would you describe your work?
[At Greco Design,] we believe that in appealing to our senses, design makes clear the differences between brands, and makes their objectives real. This is a constant, daily exercise of sharing, renovation and resignification, through projects that are based principally on content. Design has thus been gradually consolidated as a discipline capable of creating a better future for everyone.
Where do you find inspiration?
I can find inspiration everywhere. Sometimes closer than we can realize—in a good book or movie, in a chat with someone that we admire, in an exquisite dish we try for the first time. At other times, a little bit farther, during foreign travels in which we exchange with other cultures.
Regarding project inspiration, I always try to understand the client’s symbolic repertoire. The answer to the problem is always within it. That’s why the cultural and social issues are so important and constantly reflected in the quality of the projects.
Greco Design’s branding for Guaja, the first coffee co-working space in Brazil. As stated on the studio’s website: “Based on the concepts of cryptobotany, the study of exotic plants which have not been proven to exist, and on a multidisciplinary team including designers, a botanist and a scientific illustrator, we created a new plant: the Guaja. A plant likely to exist that incorporates all of the company’s attributes in its morphological characteristics.”
Who are some of your favorite designers or artists?
The list would be enormous, so I’d rather say that I admire designers and artists that combine flawless execution with a strong dose of boldness and cleverness.
Do you have a favorite among all the projects you’ve worked on?
I can’t favor one child over another. 😛
Is there a project that stands out to you as having been the biggest challenge of your career so far?
The most challenging project I’ve been working on is Greco itself, and understanding how to reconcile creativity and practicality in a company that lives by its ideas.
O Que as Vandas Não Contam, Greco’s self-promotional newspaper that was recognized in our sister publication HOW’s Promotion & Marketing Design Awards.
What do you hope to accomplish in the future?
I hope to expand our reach and to start working in other countries. So far our international participation has been mostly in the juries I take part in, publications and awards showing the quality of our work, which makes me believe that we are ready to export our work.
What’s your best advice for designers today?
Design is for sure one of the most talked about professions nowadays. But not in the same way we have traditionally worked. It’s more about business solutions, social problem-solving, content generation and many, many other issues that make a better life for everyone. There lie both challenges and opportunities in this vein.
Variable identity for IV Brazilian Biennial of Design
You don’t design to win awards.
But being able to say Aaron Draplin, Jessica Hische, Pum Lefebure, Ellen Lupton, Eddie Opara and Paula Scher think your work is the best in the country is a hell of a nice feeling.
Draplin image: Leah Nash. Hische: Helena Price. Lupton: Michelle Qureshi. Scher: Ian Roberts.