Laura Snoad

I am London-based freelance journalist specialising in design, arts and culture.

Formerly the features editor at Grand Designs Magazine, I have also worked on staff at Marketing Week and Design Week.

You can also find my writing in Grafik, Digital Arts and onoffice.

Available for projects and commissions.

Email me at hello@laurasnoad.co.uk.

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Grafik news round-up: I’ve worked on some great stories since we launched on Monday, here are some of the best.

Jon Burgerman’s Tumblr Girls show explores the visual culture blossoming from the microblogging platform and other social networking sites. Design studio Atyp was inspired by explorations into rhythm, randomness and metaphysics, to create a short film using a Cinema 4D dynamics engine. Colchester’s Firstsite gallery exhibits the work of late French avant-garde poet Henri Chopin, whose interest in chaos and form stretched from sound art to graphic concrete poems made using a typewriter. And finally, we gear up for Cheltenham Design Festival. 

We’ve featured some fantastic work from a number of emerging creatives as part of Grafik’s Talent section this month. Here are my mini Q&As with the incredible Mat Waudby, Yeni Kim and Jasper van den Bosch

Artwork above: Mat Waudby

Albeit an unconventional horticultural method, singing to plants has long been the old wives’ favourite technique for heathy foliage. But international collective ANTIVJ has turned this on its head, creating a site-specific audio-visual installation in Mexico’s Ethnobotanical garden in Oaxaca that allows its cacti to sing.

I wrote a little news piece about the project for We Heart. You can read it here. 

The verb ‘to scan’ is one of those rare semantic enigmas in the English language where a word means both one thing and simultaneously its opposite. Like cleave or sanction, this peculiar quirk entails that the act of scanning can involve just a quick, cursory glance or an in-depth viewing, recorded with great scrutiny. It’s an idea that piqued the interest of Jo Stockham, the RCA’s head of printmaking, when she was tasked with curating Liverpool gallery The Bluecoat’s new exhibition The Negligent Eye. 

For this piece for the newly launched Grafik site, I talked to Jo about how the show explores the ways printmaking has moved on from a traditional craft dialogue to include digital technologies, three-dimensional forms and new ways of image-making. 

Music, TV, even phone calls – a huge amount of our daily audio intake is now mediated by the internet. Our relationships with our computers are increasingly more intimate, and services like YouTube and Skype not only shape how we consume sound, but also how we broadcast ourselves.

This kind of human interaction with technology is something that’s long preoccupied California-based sound artist Holly Herndon, I wrote about her new two-track EP Chorus and the accompanying video by Akihiko Taniguchi’s for We Heart.

Once described as ‘William Morris on acid’, Scottish textiles designers Paul Simmons and Alistair McAuley have made a name for themselves with their eccentric wallpapers and fabrics under their Timorous Beasties moniker. Combining vibrant psychedelia with a sense of humour, they’re probably best known for their Glasgow Toile – a design that depicts the city’s tower blocks and fabrics in the style of the traditional French fabric.

For this Grand Designs Magazine feature, I caught up with Paul and Alistair to chat about their Glasgow studio and two-decade partnership. Read it here.

Surrounded by dry scrubland and a mountainous backdrop, a bear rears up on its hind legs, menacingly flashing its teeth. The image, part of French photographer Charles Fréger’s Wilder Mann series, serenely balances the creature’s sable-black fur against the chalky blue of the distant peaks but there’s something odd about the picture, especially the bear’s proud gait and disjointed fur. It’s only with closer inspection that the blacked-up face of its human wearer becomes apparent.

For this feature for Wrap magazine, I spoke to Charles  Fréger about some of the ancient costume traditions alive and kicking across Europe, as well as chatting to Zim&Zou, Damien Poulain, and Ben Newman about their contemporary equivalents.

You can buy Wrap 9 here.

Jasper Morrison is one of the world’s most respected industrial designers. Working on everything from cutlery to tram carriages, his elegant, pared-back aesthetic prioritises function over superfluous features.

For this Grand Designs Magazine feature, I caught up with the London-born, Tokyo-based designer to discuss his studio life and what makes him tick. Read it here.

Digital agencies Syzygy and Unique have collaborated with artist Rob Lawrence to realise an artwork first imagined by Marcel Duchamp in 1913, using lines of light to map the unpredictable journey of the incoming tide.

For this piece for POST Matter, I spoke to Mark Ellis about the incredible artwork dreamed up by Duchamp, and the technical innovation that brought his vision into reality.

Formerly the design director at Established & Sons, London-based furniture designer Sebastian Wrong is known for championing dramatic work that uses materials in unexpected ways. Last month it was announced that Wrong would be masterminding a new UK-based brand for Danish design company Hay – aptly called Wrong for Hay – that would feature pieces from well-known designers such as Stefan Diez and Bartian Pot, as well as in-house concepts.

For this feature for Grand Designs Magazine feature, I caught up with the man-of-the-minute designs to talk about his busy London life. Read it here.

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