once in a while you come across a design that just bowls you over. here is a piece of stationery designed by henrik nygren from stockholm, sweden, for atmosfar produktion. in the photo of my desk pin board you can see henrik’s business card. the tiny white rectangle with the single 'h.' i met henrik years ago when he contacted me through an acquaintance. i believe he was considering moving to new york, and stopped by my studio to share his work and ask a few questions about design in nyc. the work was clean, spare, restful and above all inspiring. after his visit i did not maintain a correspond-
ence, but his card remained on my wall. years later, i was in munich, zurich, geneva—frankly i don't remember where— but i bought a little book that was published in swedish. as far as i could tell, it showcased superb samples of graphic design and intimate photos of printing presses, a wonderful point of view. since i believe in looking everywhere, at everything for inspiration, i thought i had found a wonderful resource despite not being able to read it.
so many years ago now, i taught a few classes at parsons school of design, and i had a swedish student, mats hakansson. he’s a talented designer i don't see enough of and who happily, for me, worked at our studio. unfortunately, new york has the habit of coming between friends. life intrudes, and there is a lot of life in new york city but we managed to have lunch and i asked him to stop by the studio. while he was there, i brought out this book and asked him to translate. he told me it was the work of one designer and the book was about his projects and, suddenly, it hit me, i knew this person—it was henrik. wow. i never made the connection until that very moment. i had poured over the pages and looked at each project carefully, and i did so again with renewed interest. later that week, i located his business card. it had been filed away to make room for a new wall collage. i sent him an email and told him that i had discovered the book somewhere and just realized it was his work. i mentioned how much i loved everything in it and asked if he could send me a copy of the atmosfär letterhead. it so happened he was coming to nyc the following month for a project and he would be happy to stop by and bring a few samples. needless to say i was thrilled. i'm now thrilled to share this wonderful letterhead with you.