In one of my earliest posts of 2017 I highlighted the cool, minimal design concept of The League Extraordinaire – a new project from Dutch designers, Kern
The League Extraordinaire (LEO) continues to be led by John Patrick Nijkamp, Jort Braam and Jord Schöppink of Kern, combining their love for great art and clean design with football. They bring a new lease of life to the humble European football scarf, and it’s a project I still have a lot of admiration for.
Each year invites are sent to four of their favourite artists, each with distinctive styles, asking them to bring their own take to the trusty double-sided football scarf. It forces the, often very different, worlds of design and football together with results that have been really enjoyable to keep an eye out for.
Read on for the lowdown on the latest selections.
For over a decade, 2SHY has explored his vibrant, colorful and spontaneous universe, developing powerful iconography and lettering at a crossroads of graffiti, popular culture and memories of his childhood.
With parallels to the likes of early Malarky, Penfold and Lucas, the playful and innocent designs of 2Shy make for ideal LEO scarves. The mix of mad lines, shapes, and icons combined with his trademark bold colour palette have helped craft one of the most distinctive scarves of the entire setup, let alone Group C.
In true LEO style – Ladrillo’s minimal, modernist designs work perfectly with the football scarf ‘canvas’, almost to the point where you begin wondering if there’s a football team out there that has a smiling and frowning face as part of its badge!
There’s a joyful naivety with Ladrillo’s designs, powerful in their simplicity, and in their ability to make you not take things too seriously.
In the words of the guys at Kern, “he created a hooligan friendly design; a scarf that relates to the essence of the most beautiful game.”
If he’s good enough for Google (Henning put together a doodle for the 66th anniversary of the Studio for Electronic Music on 18 October) then he’s good enough for the League.
Henning’s an incredibly talented illustrator and graphic designer, with a different approach and background to both Ladrillo and 2Shy. He comes at the scarf from a completely different angle.
Currently teaching illustration at the University of Arts in Berlin, Henning’s scarf ties together his vast knowledge of design to keep your neck stylish this winter.
Most popular from all the group C participants is the trademark black and white work of LA based Cleon Peterson. The barbaric figures clashing in his simple illustrations have grabbed most attention since their release.
Striking both visually and in relevance to current world affairs, and potentially some more extreme elements of the European football scene, this design has already sold out of its limited run. In the words of Kern – be quick or be cold!