Marco Oggian founded Brutto Studio at the end of 2020.  This new project carries on where Flaco Studio left off and specialises in creating visual identities for brands.

What is Brutto Studio?

Brutto Studio is quite young, and it’s the new face of what used to be Flaco Studio. Flaco was located in A Coruña and it had an art gallery space where we showed the work of local artists.  The project came to an end due to the crisis caused by coronavirus as well as internal differences.  It’s now been reborn under the name Brutto Studio.


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What’s the story behind the new name?

Brutto means ‘ugly’ in Italian.  It’s a bit of joke, because even though we are calling ourselves ‘ugly’, our projects are really beautiful.  Another reason for the name is that, now more than ever, our perception of what is ugly or what is beautiful is super personal and subjective, and it can change at any moment.


This is also seems to be the philosophy behind the studio itself

Yes, that’s right.  I started working twelve years ago and I was lucky enough to be able to do so with people from all over the world.  Design, art direction, and creativity are fun for me and a passion of mine.  Even though our work is often connected to social causes, I’ve never wanted to be too serious about it because I believe that [being serious] is boring.  This way of thinking led to the birth of Brutto.  Our clients’ first reaction is always a smile and they say: “You call yourselves ugly, but what you’re selling is really beautiful”.  We offer the freedom to decide what is beautiful and what is ugly.

“Cosas de Casas” (“House Things”) Exhibition, with designs by Marco Oggian and Pablo Pulgar


What is the defining characteristic of Brutto Studio?

Our passion for what we do.  Passion, sacrifice, but also fun.  As creative director, I want the people I work with to have fun and not have any schedules or obligations.  I just want a good result.


Who works at the studio?

I started the studio and now collaborate with Samuel Canay (designer), Francesca Camboni (copywriting), Simone Lanza (sound), Pablo Quintillán (photography), Pocko (illustration agency), and Álex Rico.  Brutto Studio is closely associated with Álex Rico’s Follow and Urbanlab.


You cover a lot of different fields.  What does the studio specialise in?

Brutto is growing into a company that specialises in coming up with visual identities for small brands.  We also work for well-known brands, but [our clients are] mostly start-ups.  You could say we are a creative, visual, and art direction studio for brands.


Designs for the Festival de Deseño (Design Festival) #follow20


What’s your creative process?

First, we try to get into the client’s mind, or that of the person the product is for.  Then we try to find the fastest, simplest, and most effective way to get the message across.


This maxim is one of your personal characteristics.  Is the simplest and most basic option the key to a successful project, like in the campaign you worked on for Nike?

Basically, yes.  It’s part of my approach to art, which involves just five colours and geometric shapes.  It’s something that I try to get across in the studio.  When this is clearly communicated, and everyone can understand it, it means we’ve done a good job.


You talk about your obsession with good design.  What is the secret to good design?

Sacrifice, without forgetting about our mental health and making sure to do things we like, while also getting out of our comfort zone.  My obsession with doing things well is also related to my curiosity, because I like to learn something new every day.


Brutto Studio is made up of a design studio and a store.  How do these two things complement each other?

The products in the store are mostly inexpensive posters.  As a studio, we aren’t within everyone’s price range, but the products in the store are.  It’s something we think about a lot, because we believe art is for everyone.  That’s why we don’t want a store that’s for the elite.  [Instead], we offer our clients incredible, well-made products at very affordable prices.


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Flaco Studio had an art gallery space.  Will Brutto offer something similar?

Not right now, because we are working on building a new studio, Studio Follow, together with Álex Rico and his creative agencies Urbanlab and Follow.  This studio will be 750m2 and will have space for an art gallery that will be open to the public.  This new project will also be in A Coruña.


Can you tell us a bit more about Studio Follow?

Studio Follow is the apotheosis.  It’s Álex and I sharing our passion for design in the biggest way possible.  Professionals will be able to rent the spaces out, and the public will have a welcoming space in which they can see and experience interesting things.


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Which designers inspire you and are there any professionals that you’d like to connect with?

I have some idols that, over time, have become colleagues or artists that I’ve shared exhibits with. They include Eike König and Stefan Sagmeister.  Stefan is the most famous designer in the world and there’s no doubt that he inspires is all.  But we don’t place a lot of importance on who we work with at Brutto.  We want to work with people that speak for themselves.  That’s the [definition of the] dream client.  I’ve worked with Nike, Vogue, Zara, and Samsung, but that doesn’t mean I don’t put in 100% for all our clients, whether it’s a bar in A Coruña or Vogue itself.