Dezeen Magazine

Adam Nathaniel Furman creates 3D-printed totems for ITV ident

London designer Adam Nathaniel Furman has created an abstract sculpture that features in a short animation created for UK broadcaster ITV.

Furman's ident features a colourful 3D-printed sculpture made up of sliced, spliced and stacked sections of the channel's logo.

Positioned on a circular patterned base featuring disjointed concentric circles, a tall central totem sits in the centre surrounded by three shorter columns.

Different idents on ITV every week for a year

The animation was commissioned as part of the channel's Creates series, which launched on 1 January this year. ITV Creates is an on-screen identity project across the commercial broadcaster's main channel, commissioned and curated by independent artistic director Charlie Levine.

Every week over the course of the year the channel introduces new idents – the short sequences shown on television between programmes that identify the channel – created by a wide range of British artists.

Shown for one week only, each of the idents showcase a different creative interpretation of the ITV logo.

Adam Nathaniel Furman ITV ident
Designer Adam Nathaniel Furman is one of 52 artists chosen to create an ITV ident

For the week starting 25 March, the channel launched an ident by London-based multidisciplinary designer Adam Nathaniel Furman.

Furman is best known as an expert on postmodernism, the late 20th-century style that exploits and exaggerates historical references. He is the first architectural designer to be commissioned for the project.

"I designed through hand drawings, and then developed the designs in detail on computer," Furman told Dezeen. "I then worked with fabricators Lee3d to figure out a way to 3D-print these large sculptures in many parts out of pigmented plaster."

Furman's design draws on Robert Indiana and Play-Doh

These plaster parts were then carefully assembled on the circular base, which is made out of print-backed toughened glass on a rotating bed.

Furman told Dezeen that his inspirations ranged from American artist Robert Indiana to the children's modelling clay Play-Doh.

Adam Nathaniel Furman ITV ident
Furman looked to Robert Indiana, Tony Cragg and children's modelling clay for his design

"I was definitely influenced by Robert Indiana's LOVE sculpture, and then also playground equipment for the smaller pieces," he said. "The central column piece was inspired by a mixture of Tony Cragg and Play-Doh Squeezers – so always a bit of high and low, adult and child, serious and playful."

Conceptually, the shorter columns, Furman said, are a nod to ITV's three main areas of broadcasting – factual, entertainment and drama – while the central column represents "all of the elements and facets" of ITV's diverse offering.

ITV Creates project produces first new idents for six years

In Furman's ident, the camera slowly pans around the sculpture to capture its abstract forms from different angles.

"I don't think I could have predicted just how brilliantly the camera team would make it come alive," said Furman. "It's just really great to see a sculpture, which is normally static inside a space, come alive with these incredible lenses. I'm a big cinema fan, so it felt like I was watching a movie of my own objects."

The revolving Creates project is the first time in six years that ITV has changed its idents.

"Idents have been around since the dawn of TV and the way they have behaved has changed very little," said Tony Pipes, executive creative director of ITV's in-house creative agency ITV Creatives.

"We wanted to push against the prevailing convention that idents are set, the idea that they are moving wallpaper that last five or 10 years without changing."

Furman, whose practice ranges from architecture and interiors, to sculpture, installation, writing and product design, is also founder of the Postmodern Society.

Last year Furman released a book titled Revisiting Postmodernism that he wrote in collaboration with architect Terry Farrell, who designed a number of postmodern icons in the 1980s. The book argues that the movement is currently experiencing a resurgence – despite the backlash against it.

Most recently, Furman blasted this year's Serpentine Pavilion architect Junya Ishigami for employing unpaid interns. Furman published an email from Junya Ishigami + Associates on his Instagram account two weeks ago, in which the Japanese studio sets out terms for an unpaid internship.

Images courtesy of ITV Creates and Theo Deproost.