Ex Nihilo

  • Ex Nihilo (Out of Nothing) explores the parallels between the philosophy of existential nihilism and minimalist graphic design. The absurdity of human existence, self-awareness and reduction are the primary themes within existential nihilism. Through visual form, minimalist graphic design conveys this ideology by advocating ambiguity and simplicity through the removal of non-essential design elements. As a result, this method of visual communication reflects on the nature of humanity.
    A portion of this project was on display within the [former] Corcoran Gallery of Art, as part of the NEXT senior thesis exhibition. I showcased a black obelisk structure—The Monolith; this obelisk housed two small, visually-driven books. The book contained a series of designs and illustrations that complimented the main themes within my essay. Specifically, this piece exemplified simplicity through chaos, a reductive solution that focuses on a conceptually-driven message. The Monolith represents ambiguity manifest and may be interpreted in multiple ways. The books are its counterpart—a visual journey that explores meaning through arbitrariness and ultimately results in simplicity.

    You can read the full essay here.