Quote of Note | Stefan Sagmeister

“I love organizing my work. That’s an important aspect of my character—probably rooted in my cultural origin. I firmly believe that good organization is what gives me the freedom to create. For example, I keep tabs on the studio’s financial health myself because keeping the budget balanced is absolutely vital to me. On the other hand, when I have to deal with a new project, something unprecedented, and I need to find the right tools to address the challenge, the job seems very difficult to me—it completely stresses me out and takes up an enormous amount of my energy. I have to do it in the morning, because it would seem out of the question to me later in the day. I save the afternoons for my organizational chores, for meetings and interviews, because those are things I know how to do. They don’t scare me; they even reassure me, stabilize me. The spontaneous quality that comes across in many of my works is actually extremely planned and precisely defined beforehand. This said, my habit of making lists (of sentences, references, concepts, figures, etc.) before broaching a subject or a commission is no longer as systematic as it used to be. Sometimes I make a list of bad ideas, because that’s a good way to get rid of them! On the contrary, though, my large note- and sketchbooks are always closely linked to my work and my way of thinking, of drawing—and hence of creating. They are permanently present in my studio and everyone consults them.”

Stefan Sagmeister in an interview with Chantal Prod’Hom in his latest book, Sagmeister: Another Book about Promotion and Sales Material (Abrams)