Artist Profile: Misha Zadeh and her Modern Garden
Years before it became a tag line on Portlandia, Seattle artist Misha Zadeh was at the forefront of the now ubiquitous design trend of 'putting a bird on it'. It's this dedication of remaining at the vanguard of surface design that has kept Misha ahead of the creative curve with vibrant and cheerful imagery for greeting cards, scarves and most recently, a dynamic collection of home goods with Minneapolis vendor One Hundred 80 Degrees.
I met Misha at her favorite bakery in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood where I found her to be just as vibrant and engaging as her work would suggest. A graphic designer by trade, Misha launched into the stationery world via the National Stationery Show with a line of handmade, cut-paper greeting cards. Blink twice, and she was suddenly employing friends to help fill orders and working with the likes of Barneys New York and Liberty London.
But it's her latest collaboration with One Hundred 80 Degrees that has her most proud; "I was very interested in creating a home decor line, and in particular, tabletop housewares." So much was her desire that she signed up for a local ceramics class just to get a better understanding of the medium and how her designs would translate onto pottery.
It's this attention to detail that fills her days with pre-production cleanup in addition to working on plenty of new designs. When asked about what keeps her inspired, she talks about walks in her neighborhood, garden tours and 'shopping' her sketchbooks. In fact, her current poppy design is one that often ended up doodled on envelopes and packages.
Misha spoke often about trying not to chase design trends and staying true to one’s visual voice. Her ideal? To create designs with longevity. "I’d rather set trends than answer to them" she said. "I want my work to feel contemporary and relevant, but not so super trendy. I want to create products that don’t have such a limited shelf life. I’ll pull cards from my 16 year old stationery line that still feel fresh." Her current illustrations speak to a modern garden full of saturated colors and stylized florals with an ever-so-slight Marimekko vibe.
Misha's strength in her artistry and her bold designs are what caught the eye of many at the Surtex show in 2017. Remember those ceramic classes? "It helped art directors visualize my work on physical forms, and ultimately helped me land a full collection with 180 Degrees." In fact, Misha is 180’s first large-scale designer partnership in years, and the result has been remarkably successful. Her illustrations are now gracing everything from ceramic pitchers to melamine plates to napkins. When asked on her thoughts on the collection? "I love it, it’s like seeing my Surtex booth come to life!”
You can add Misha Zadeh's collection of housewares to your retail store by contacting One Hundred 80 Degrees via their website or speaking to your local 180 rep.