Michał Łojewski, co-founder and creative director of White Cat Studio, is a declared minimalist. He quoted one of the most important modernists, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe: "Less means more," when asked about his motto. A childhood spent in Japan significantly influenced his style philosophy.
Graphic design studio set up by Mikołaj Łojewski and Paweł Łojewski.
Łojewski, born in 1974, graduated from the Faculty of Graphic Art of the Warsaw Academy of Fine Arts in 2005, obtaining his diploma under the supervision of professor Mieczysław Wasilewski. However, he created his own White Cat Studio alongside his brother Paweł much earlier - in 2001. Today the studio designs visual identification systems, packages and logos for the biggest companies in Poland. The bureau also creates graphic designs and typographies, and offers consultancy on image creation and brand positioning. One of the most often awarded Polish graphic artists, Łojewski has received prestigious foreign prizes such as the Red Dot Award and the European Design Award (both for the visual identification of the company Netia), and has won laurels in various contests including the Polish competition of the KTR (Advertisment Creators' Club), in the advertisement competition Złote Orły (Golden Eagles) and in the press design competition Chimera. In 2012 Brief magazine, a monthly devoted to advertising and marketing, deemed Łojewski Man of the Year.
White Cat Studio has made visual identification systems for such giants as PKO BP Bank, Alior Bank, the aforementioned Netia and PZU. The rebranding of the latter, one of the studio's most recent realizations, provides a fine example of the studio's design philosophy in motion. Łojewski referred the insurance company's former logotype from the 50's as an inspiration for the his final logo design (PZU's history dates back to 1803). While the graphic logos used by PZU in recent years were unclear, over-detailed and highly complicated, Łojewski reflected, the old corporate symbol had a clear and simple form. In an urban environment hyper-saturated with complex images, Łojewski turns to simple, clear and strong features devoid of any superfluous elements in order to render his designs more visible and timeless.
A project which earned Łojewski a place in the most recent history of Polish design was the magazine FUTU, an exclusive press publication, which he designed in 2005. All of the periodical's elements, including the form, layout, paper and package, contribute to the final image as much as the published texts and photos. This 'work of graphic art' blazed a completely new trail in the Polish press market.
In 2015 Łojewski won the Grand Prix prize for a visual identity project for a shopping mall Magnolia Park in Wrocław. This complex project consists both of a new logo and a complete redoing of the building itself, including information signs on it. Łojewski, inspired by famous fashion houses like FENDI or Louis Vuitton plays with white, combined with a purple/pink pattern. This brushstroke-like pattern adds a striking artistic dimension to the project.
Łojewski's second passion after from graphic design is fashion. In 2003, together with the fashion designer Ania Kuczyńska, he created the conceptual clothing brand UEG (the name is an abbreviation of the Italian phrase 'usa e getta' – use and throw away). He has developed this firm on his own since 2005, and in 2012 the company opened its first boutique in Warsaw. UEG is a brand that doesn’t adhere to trends, but rather creates specific manifests under notions such as 'Independent' or 'Love.' Using a special fabric called Tyveku, which resembles paper, UEG’s clothing has an interesting 'crumpled' texture and gets worn out quickly. The clothes and accessories made by the firm resemble other projects by Łojewski in that they are crude, minimalistic, monochromatic and conspicuous. As the designer emphasizes, the development of this brand provides him with the unusual joy of creating something that toes the line between industrial design and fashion. With UEG he creates 'packages' for people - something like a uniform, but comfortable and desirable. As he declared in the company’s manifesto,
Everything that exists is alike. Each of us is similar to somebody else... Your 'I' becomes transformed so that it resembles a uniform… Don’t be alone, be similar.
Grand Prix for visual identity of Magnolia Park, Wrocław
KTR 2013, Golden medal for the visual identity of PZU
The Man of the Year, Brief 2012
European Design Awards 2012: Brand Logo, silver medal (Netia logo)
European Design Awards 2012: Brand Implementation, bronze medal (visual identity, Netia)
KTR 2012, silver medal (visual identity, Netia)
KREATURA 2012 (visual identity, Netia)
Red Dot: Communication Design 2011, Red Dot Award – Netia (Corporate Identity)
Złote Orły 2011 (PKO corporate identity); honourable mention – Netia corporate identity; honourable mention - PKO Bank Polski corporate identity; honourable mention - Smirnoff Vladimir Limited Edition (packaging category)
KTR 2010, silver medal for Smirnoff Vladimir Limited Edition (visual identity)
KREATURA 2010 for Smirnoff Vladimir Limited Edition (visual identity)
1st Award – poster "200th Anniversary of Fryderyk Chopin’s birth
KTR 2009 Bronze medal– visual identity for Alior Bank (category: Graphic Design)
KTR 2008 nomination – FUTU Magazine F4 (category Graphic Design); nomination – FUTU Magazine F5 (category Graphic Design)
ZŁOTE ORŁY 2008, Złoty Orzeł (Golden Eagle) – visual identity for Alior Bank (category: Graphic Design)
CHIMERA 2008, Golden Chimera – FUTU Magazine F5 (category: magazine); Silver Chimera – FUTU Magazine F5 (category: cover)
ADC*E (Art Directors Club of Europe) 2007, nomination – FUTU Magazine (category: Editorial / Books / Corporate Publishing)
KREATURA 2007, Kreatura – image campaign House "Urban Jungle" ; nominated – image campaign
House "Urban Jungle" (category Health and Beauty poster)
CHIMERA 2007, Golden Chimera – FUTU Magazine F4 (category: magazine); Golden Chimera – FUTU Magazine F2, F3 (category: cover); Silver Chimera – FUTU Magazine F2 (category: illustration)
KTR 2006 bronze medal – Papr Jacket UEG (category: Graphic Design) ; bronze medal –House "Urban Jungle" (category: Warsztat Print Foto); nomination – Między Nami Cafe 4 (category: Graphic Design)
ZŁOTE ORŁY 2006, Złoty Orzeł (Golden Eagle) –Bielenia visual identity (category: graphic design); Złoty Orzeł (Golden Eagle) – FUTU Magazine F3, F4 (category: editorial)
CHIMERA 2006, Bronze Chimera – FUTU Magazine F1 (category:magazine); Bronze Chimera – FUTU Magazine F1 (category:debut)
KTR 2005 silver medal – To Come / Ania Kuczyńska ; silver medal – Silent Hill (with Szymonem Rogińskim) ; bronze medal – Trinacria s/s 2005 Ania Kuczyńska ; bronze medal – Brand Yourself, Package Yourself UEG ; bronze medal – Plakat UEG
ZŁOTE ORŁY 2004 honourable mention (visual identity TrzyCztery; Graphic Design category)
More at: whitecat.com.pl, ueg.pl, michallojewski.com
Author: Anna Cymer, updated AM, May 2016.