Why master one discipline when you can master them all? Graphis Master Martin Gran and his firm, Snøhetta, are the “jack of all trades” of the design world, with hands in every specialty from architecture to product design.
Martin Gran is a partner at Snøhetta, an architecture and design firm with its headquarters in Oslo, Norway. With degrees in management, psychology, and sociology, and twenty-three years’ experience within brand-driven communication, architecture, and design environments and projects, Martin is a versatile and professional leader. His deep interest in the human mind, combined with commercial understanding and ability, makes him a strategic asset to organizations and design projects. His professional career spans from being the Scandinavian Design Group’s new business director and strategic advisor to acting as strategic lead for McCann Erickson New York. He has also been a strategic planner at Leo Burnett and an account director at Leo Burnett. Martin also regularly lectures and gives talks all over the world.
Although Martin Gran is, perhaps, best known for his work in architecture, he also brings his expertise to every detail of his clients’ design identities, including interior design, branding, and so much more. With his unique educational foundation, Gran adapts to a wide variety of projects with ease. His thoughtfulness and attention to detail ensures that each product, whether it be a building or a banknote, ingeniously pushes beyond all expectations. As Fritz Gottschalk, graphic designer at Gottschalk+Ash Int’l says, “It’s encouraging to come across work by Martin Gran/Snøhetta in today’s world. For Martin, the sky is literally the limit; his work is ahead of everything. All I can say is: Bravo! Keep it up!”
Here is a snippet from Martin Gran’s interview:
What is your work philosophy?
When people meet, things happen.
Who is or was your greatest mentor?
Today, my greatest mentors are Kjetil Trædal Thorsen and Craig Dykers, the founding partners of Snøhetta. Over the years, I have had many, both close family members and friends.
Who among your contemporaries today do you most admire?
Gro Harlem Brundtland, Norway’s first female prime minister and director general of the World Health Organization. She chaired the Brundtland Commission, which presented the Brundtland Report on sustainable development. We still use Brundtland’s work in our pursuit to bring added value to our projects. I also admire Paula Sher, a partner at Pentagram. She’s admired by many for her teachings and work, and I met her for the first time at the New School. She gave a talk about the new visual identity for the school, which was an institution my father used to work at back in 1986. After that, we’ve met occasionally in New York, and she has my deepest admiration.
To read more of Martin Gran’s interview and discover other great artists, check out Graphis Journal #372, which can be purchased online at graphis.com.