We’ve been working with Constance on several small projects lately, and we’re reminded how much we love working with them. Founder, Erik Kiesewetter, has been a close friend and collaborator of DNO for years. We’re incredibly grateful for the work we've been able to produce together, and we’re convinced that the city of New Orleans is better with him here. While picking up a recent print job, we decided to hang back to catch up and check out his studio.
It seems like you've been consistently printing better work. Do you think some of the quality has to do with quality of clients? Have you hit a new level as far as clients and collaborators go?
on the print side of things, i think it takes some time to share the capabilities of what the process can do for people. this takes time and sit-down with people, which i do for each and every person that i print locally for-- to ensure they get something special out of it. as far as some of the more recent larger and out of town artists and designers contacting me about producing their work, i feel many of them are already familiar with the process and/or may be exposed to printed ephemera in a way that new orleans may not have been. in that way, i think some of the more recent projects have been more challenging and i have been definitely learning more and more-- which i think helps produce things better and more efficiently.
this gives me a chance then to share these projects with people here as well-- which i think benefits everyone.
Who are some of your favorite New Orleans clients, or creative entities to work with?
i think the YCA [young creative agency] has been something that new orleans has needed for young people. these kids are so tuned in and into getting to design and produce art that their excitement is intoxicating. i love sharing work with them that gets them a chance to see things they may not know might have existed. the hunger to see and be presented with challenging visuals is something that i can relate to. i always feel good when i spend time with them.
i also think neighborhood story project over the years has given a voice to those who might not have ever thought they would be able be share their work through their writing-- and in publication form, no less. there are so many stories to be told from kids and young adults in this complex city-- that i feel the ability to be published makes it official. it is something that deeply resonates with me and i feel that's why my interest lies in designing and working with the printed page.
There's always been a strong sense of regionalism in your work. You have a great sensitivity to context and points of origin -- seeming to find the core 'German-ness' or 'Louisiana-ness' of your subjects and audiences. Anything further to say on this?
yes, it is a delicate balance-- being from a place, wanting to project that somehow-- share it, twist it and reject it all at once is something that i enjoy. i think it has been something that i cannot escape, being from louisiana and growing up in a german household and how one sees things, questions things and interprets them. maybe in the end i identify with neither but i have to convince others at least.
Constance continues to critically investigate discourses in design, using highly unstable processes that cannot be easily measured and do not always yield the outcomes that were intended :)
Shop the DNO x Constance collection here
First photo and last photo by Marcus Alfred
Erik is wearing our new DNO anorak