In 1998 I attended this over-the-top crazy creative conference in San Francisco.
It was called FUSE: Beyond Typography and it was a Neville Brody gig, named for his font magazine. The whole shebang overstuffed itself into San Francisco’s Masonic Center on Nob Hill. And what happened inside was really ‘beyond typography,’ in that the typophiles I knew were complaining where’s the type? It made sense. It was BEYOND.
It was many days. I think a week. Maybe a month, a year? I don’t remember. Nob Hill is up in the clouds, which was fitting. But what I do know is the speakers – which ranged from budding architects Zaha Hadid and Michael Sorkin to author Karrie Jacobs and a slide show from soon-to-pass-on Tibor Kalman – left me recharged about graphic design and what a real creative can do.
Then, turned out the week of FUSE Phil Hartman died.
2001 changed everything.
And the economic disaster that followed also put a lot of creative plans on hold. I quit my corporate job right after FUSE and moved on to more meaningful work, eventually landing in teaching. I kept doing the fun work, but bread-n-butter work started to take over. Survival became more important as creativity was pushed aside.
In 2007 I left my position as president of the Art Directors and Artists Club of Sacramento and from a distance, saw it shut down early 2012. BUT I did remember the spark of FUSE (which was a money-loser for the organizers) and kept side projects going. I started this very blog, released a few fonts. [Read more →]