M to M, A to Z
Yesterday at MoMa PS1′s Sunday Sessions panel, Michael Amzalag and Mathias Augustyniak—the grown-up enfants terribles behind the graphic-design partnership M/M Paris—discussed M to M of M/M (Paris), their first retrospective book. Glenn O’Brien—an M/M collaborator—moderated the conversation. “So who’s Mert and who’s Marcus?” was his opening inquiry. (A “fashion joke,” as the writer put it.) The pair laughed it off good-naturedly.
“We were approached ten years ago,” Amzalag told Style.com. “The physical work on the book took three years, but then there were two of going through the archives, and five of finding the right route.” The decade of due diligence paid off. M to M marks the pair’s twentieth anniversary in business, and it’s a fitting testament to their erudite style. The 528-page monograph is chock-full of Amzalag and Augustyniak’s greatest hits—from hand-drawn overlays on Balenciaga and Stella McCartney campaigns of yesteryear, to their groundbreaking catalog work for Inez van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin, to iProduct apps for Björk. The tome proudly reflects M/M’s keystone role in the forever-hybridizing fields of design, fashion, art, and music. And though they didn’t design it themselves (“We inverted the process—someone came to us with the solution—that was a beautiful moment,” said Augustyniak), the book’s juggled alphabetizing and pagination—it starts on page 311, at the letter M, naturally—pays homage to the pair’s distinct, irreverent intellect.