James Vinciguerra <em>Belgrado/Amigdala at Der Autobhan</em>, <em>Berlin</em> 2022. Courtesy of the designer<br/>
© James Vinciguerra

James Vinciguerra

James Vinciguerra
(b. 1984, Western Australia. Lives and works in Melbourne)

James Vinciguerra is a designer and musician based in Melbourne. Working across a range of sectors but with a focus on music, Vinciguerra has designed album covers, T-shirts, posters, scarves, logos, posters and more for Total Control (the Melbourne band in which he also plays drums), Constant Mongrel, Sleep D, AD 93, Carne Bollente and many others. With a penchant for custom, convention-defying lettering and typography, and hand-drawn illustration, Vinciguerra’s work is a mixture of digital and analogue media. 

This exhibition features a selection of Vinciguerra’s poster designs, album artwork and a T-shirt for Total Control. In each of these works, as across his practice, Vinciguerra shirks traditional graphic design conventions, favouring instead a more organic and intuitive approach. He draws inspiration from a diverse array of sources, including non-Latin characters, artwork created by children, handwriting, deviant art, freeware fonts, and even oil stains and clouds. In the works featured in Babel Bookcase, we see key tropes of Vinciguerra’s practice: low-resolution images, stretched and reprocessed lettering, digital airbrushing, floral handwriting, some 1980s nostalgia, and occasionally some type that is actually on a level baseline. It would be unreasonable to suggest that there are no other designers quite like Vinciguerra, but one of them is 85 years old and the other is Portuguese. 

Vinciguerra completed a Certificate IV in Design early on in his career. He has since exhibited locally and internationally, and in 2020 was selected for the Tom of Finland Foundation residency in Los Angeles. His advice for young designers? ‘Be yourself, find your voice. Graphic design is everywhere, graphic design isn’t everything.’