Sagmeister & Walsh Designs Business Cards to Flatter, Provoke, Insult

We’re declaring March Stefan Sagmeister month! The designer’s “Happy Show” opens Wednesday in Los Angeles at MOCA Pacific Design Center (he’ll speak on “Design and Happiness” tomorrow evening in West Hollywood), and on the other side of the country, New York’s Jewish Museum offers up a room full of jaw-dropping, typographical whimsy in “Six Things: Sagmeister & Walsh,” the first exhibition of Sagmeister and Jessica Walsh‘s recently launched design firm. Between readying museum shows, the designing duo found time to whip up some new business cards for you–and all profits go to New York’s Coalition for the Homeless.

Now to muster the courage required to give the cards to others. True to their provocative nature, Sagmeister and Walsh have created something that is half graphic design, half social experiment. The seven sets of seven cards in their “Halftone Satisfaction” series are printed with bold sentiments that range from the flattering (“It’s a delight to be around someone who loves with they do.”) to the vicious (“You are a waste of time.”).

Lest you vituperate someone (“Fuck you. Eat shit.”) you had meant to compliment (“Your eyes are lovely.”), the back of each card is printed with a mood-matched pattern, from solid white through gradations of dots and finally, solid black. “It’s a test of what kind of person you are and what kind of people you meet,” says Sagmeister, “what cards would you give out and why?” Sagmeister & Walsh’s motivations for creating the cards are easier to explain: they are a limited-edition collection for the Luxe Project, a initiative that gives 100% of net proceeds to the designer’s charity of choice.