Companion–Platform is the graphic design practice of Lexi Visco and Calvin Rocchio.

We make things in close collaboration with the environments and communities we live within, believing that nothing emerges isolated from an ecosystem, and that the background is as much the foreground when introducing something new to a landscape; be it a book, a drawing, a website, or a workshop. We live and work in Berkeley, CA, the ancestral and unceded land of the Chochenyo speaking Ohlone people, and within what was once the Codornices Creek watershed.

Hello@companion–platform.org
@companion___platform
Are.na
We're currently collaborating with: MOLD Magazine, NIAD Art Center, The Wattis Institute, nan collymore, Everyday Oil, Krupskaya Books, John Rogers, The Office of Charles de Lisle, California College of the Arts, and 2727 California Street.
A brown envelope illustrated with the words "Our Seed Community," floating over a black and white image of a cabin and a garden at Salmon Creek Farm. Illustrations of seed distribution also decorate the envelope.

Salmon Creek Farm: 2020 Seed Mix

print design / print strategy / print production
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Fritz Haeg of Salmon Creek Farm invited us to conceive of and design a vessel to distribute the 2020 collection of seeds harvested from the summer and fall garden. It was a cacophonous mix of greens, grains, flowers, edible cultivars, and native wildflowers that were gathered by many hands over many months.

These seeds are intended to be shared and germinated widely!

We designed and illustrated these pieces in hope of celebrating the many species and vectors that play a role in dispersing seeds from a garden, and that for everyone who participates to also feel their role in this dissemination, whether it’s by beginning a new garden, or sharing seeds with friends to disperse and tend. We experimented with stippled lines, dots, and dashes to illustrate processes in motion and continuous change in the garden environment.
Winter, 2020

to order: www.salmoncreekfarm.org

Thank you Fritz for everything that you do, and for all of the organisms and ways of being that you support through Salmon Creek Farm. And thank you Jeremy Schipper for your presence and enthusiasm that was so dearly felt throughout this project!

Seeds collected by: Jerome AB, Gabriel Cameron, Nicolaus Chaffin, Fritz Haeg, Natan Daskal, Nick Gueli, Rachael Hawkins, Seth Jones, Amelia Lang, Adam Linder, Andrew Owen, Todd McQuade, Calvin Rocchio, Jeremy Schipper, Ari Shapiro, Fanny Singer, Alex Tieghi-Walker, and Lexi Visco.
A screenshot of a webpage in a browser, containing cutout gold jewelry floating over a grainy image of an arm amidst black abstract forms. The jewelry is made by the artist nan collymore.

nan collymore

web design / front end development / photography / digital strategy / print design / content development
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nan collymore is an artist working in multiple materials – gold, textiles, words, paper and time-based media. Her work can be found in galleries, amongst jewelry designers, and at book fairs.

nan invited us to design and build a website that would serve as a home for her rampantly generous and interdisciplinary practice that spans writing, art making, teaching, and jewelry design. Our first conversation took place over Egyptian chamomile tea at our kitchen table, and before long the surface was covered by pages from Édouard Glissant and Fred Moten. An energy accumulated from the very start, and we decided that we would phase the project out, beginning with the jewelry arm of her practice, and eventually design a hub that would connect her writing, art practice, and books.

We sought to reimagine what an e-commerce site could look and feel like to support nan’s precious gold pieces with care.

How can a store feel like the subterranean strata of poetics?

nan’s work hovers over the surface of shifting environments–scans from places scattered over the surfaces of our tables and conversations. Once you click through any specific piece, you enter the horizontal space of the “store” where each piece of jewelry is represented through both image and language. One can move laterally from piece to piece, or vertically through visual environments–we hope for the experience of buying her work to feel like a descent into her process and emotional space in which the work stems from. This project is ongoing, and will continue to grow with and in support of nan’s practice.
Summer, 2020

www.nancollymore.com

nan, thank you for your trust, love, and brilliant mind that never seems to slow. We are grateful for our collaboration and your presence in this world.
Two books lay side by side with soft green covers, and bound with forest green coils. The book on the left spells out ALT-TEXT AS POETRY out in abstract shapes, generally used to represent trees in plan drawings of parks. The book on the right is the visual description of the book on the left. At the bottom of each cover are the artists names: Shannon Finnegan & Bojana Coklyat.

Alt–Text As Poetry

publication design / print production
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Alt-Text As Poetry is an ongoing project created by the artists Shannon Finnegan and Bojana Coklyat. It’s a multi-year exploration of the poetic potential of image description, creating opportunities for practice and discussion.

The workbook comes as a box set of two, encouraging people to engage the workbook with a friend or colleague. The repeated shapes on the first cover (and described on the second cover) are abstract marks used by landscape architects in plan drawings to fill areas of green space where they imagine trees. When Shannon invited us to collaborate in making the text into a book, we were curious to think about what we could contribute to the text visually, but with the most economic means possible, not adding anything extraneous to the content of the project. We thought about what it would mean to provide an environment for the text, and how that environment would eventually, if only conceptually, shape the experience of the workbook when people met to work through them together. We thought of public parks as places that people return to again and again to spend time with one another, and that that time is often shaped by who is present and the surrounding environment that day, much like how we hope people will inhabit this book.
Winter, 2020

Edition: 300 sets

Printed by: Colpa Press

www.alt-text-as-poetry.net

Thank you Shannon for graciously inviting us to be apart of this project, and for all of your patience, enthusiasm for concept and color, and consistently thoughtful feedback in the process. And thank you to Laurel Schwulst and Taichi Aritomo for the beautiful Alt-Text As Poetry website, and for all of the generative conversations around how to render this project visible.
Two cellphone sit next to one another, both with views of the website We Listen Nearby on the screen. the phone on the left has the homepage with black text and a soft rose colored background. The second phone has a black background,  with stacked sections containing index items to the site, and a bright reddish orange section at the top that serves as the audio player for conversations.

We Listen Nearby

web design / front end development / digital strategy
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We were grateful to be invited by Diego Villalobos on behalf of the Capp Street Residency to collaborate with the artist, researcher, and educator, Hồng-Ân Trương, to design and build a website repository for her project We Listen Nearby. The project was originally intended to be a series of conversations between artists, theorists, curators, and educators, all using the films and writing of Trinh T. Minh-ha as a point of departure. Because of Covid-19, conversations had to be recorded over the phone, and the website needed to take the place of a physical gathering. We wanted the gravity of voices, experiences, thoughts, and ideas, all accumulated in one place to still be felt, but to also celebrate the listening experience that was possible if someone was by themselves, listening actively. The act of listening became a precedent across the site, recording each piece of text and participant’s bio from the voice in which it was written. A polyphony of voices begin to proliferate as content is added, and as the repository continues to grow. We also designed an index system for the references that emerge in each conversation that fill the space between each conversation node, generating a library of interconnected material.

We Listen Nearby was conceived of and facilitated by Hồng-Ân Trương in response to the year long reading group organized by Kim Nguyen at the Wattis Institute, focusing on the work of filmmaker and theorist Trinh T. Minh-ha. This project was generously supported by the Capp Street Residency, and The Wattis Institute.
Fall, 2020

www.welistennearby.org

Thank you Diego for your invitation to contribute to this brilliant project, and for your support throughout the process, and to Hồng-Ân Trương for all of your effort, care, and trust in rendering this project visible and sharable.
A cream colored cover nearly covered in purple text that describes the importance of the hyphen in our name Companion–Platform. Scans of black and white floral ornaments breakup the text.

On the Hyphen

print design / print production
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Our name is just as much the hyphen as it is the words it sits between. The hyphenated space of Companion–Platform stretches, expands, reaches, tangles, and teeters; sometimes a platform and at other times a see-saw, but always a space for practicing a hyphenated way of being in the world today. The hyphen is an open invitation to set wild and seemingly disparate feeling things side by side, opening up perspectives from which to reconsider what formerly felt familiar, steady, and contained. We have come to know the hyphen as a garden, a tendril, a hum, a hyperlink, a see-saw, and a platform.  
Summer, 2019

This piece was originally conceived to be our first business card intoducing our studio.
The front and back cover of a small exhibition catalog, played open, together forming an abstracted stage in the negative space of vertical white lines, resembling curtains.

Cinthia Marcelle

print design / print production
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A free exhibition booklet including an essay written by Kim Nguyen, on behalf of “A morta” by Cinthia Marcelle at the Wattis Institute. The dark stage on the cover and use of the Zipper typeface were in reference to Oswald De Andrade’s play, also titled A MORTA, which served as a historical platform for Marcelle’s live streams and radio play, programmed throughout the exhibition. To serve as a counterpart to the website interface specially designed for the show, we made a program that is meant to feel as though it was photocopied from a previous program, the way scripts are often photocopied from scripts, slowly deteriorating over time, accruing texture and visual noise every time they are re-inhabited.
Fall, 2019

www.wattis.org

Thank you Kim Nguyen for your support in working on this project.
Black brushy strokes resemble the outlines of leaves, outline black type on a white background that describes various projects by the initiative Distributed Web of Care.

Distributed Web of Care

print design / print strategy
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The Distributed Web of Care (DWC) is a research initiative on communication infrastructure, exploring the Distributed Web as a peer-to-peer, alternative web which prioritizes collective agency and individual ownership of data and code. We were invited by the initiatives founder, Tayoon Choi, to help imagine how the aggregated titles of DWC could be rendered as a flag on the occasion of the exhibition THE ZAPATISTA WI-FI REBELLION at Naval Gallery in Los Angeles, CA. The hope was that the flags could be made as a multiple and reproduced on demand, so we conceptualized and designed a means of prototyping the flag as a poster containing the constellation of titles, and DWC’s mission statement as a vase. For every flag made, a new bouquet could be drawn to encompass the titles of each contribution that comprised the project.
Fall, 2019

www.distributedweb.care

Thank you to Tayoon for inviting us to contribute to this project.
A pile of images and scraps, all overlapping on a bright yellow background with a grid, resembling a bug trap used by ecologists to measure insect populations.

P.E. Area

workshop / print production / publication design / web design
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Print Experimentation Area, an extension and reorientation of Publication Studio SF,  is an experiment in communal publishing and printing. Housed within the magic space of 2727 California Street, a Berkeley-based an art & education initiative and an artist-in-residence program, P.E. Area is a project that helps support and facilitate the process of self-publishing: from conceptualization of a project to design, printing, binding, and distribution. We work with a wide range of people and age groups, including 2727’s neighbors, students, teachers, local artists and poets, and community organizers. By opening up our process and resources to the public, the act of publishing becomes a means of working in an inherently collaborative way—whether working with an artist in depth or helping support others in self-publishing through informal education around design, production, or distribution. It’s the exchanges that take place within this mode of publishing as a public process that feel the most meaningful to us and the communities we are fortunate enough to work within.
Fall, 2018 – Fall, 2019

www.2727.today

Thank you to Lydia Glenn-Murray, for welcoming us into the 2727 California Street family, and for your endless enthusiasm, support, and friendship. Thank you Frank Traynor and Gabe Garza for your ambient humor. Thank you Salimatu Amabebe, Buddy, Jasmine Lee, Jade Novarino, and Kim Upstill for your generosity in sharing your beautiful and delicious homemade meals; your cooking sustained us.
A light gray poster covered from top to bottom in black type describing all of the upcoming programming for the Oakland Summer School . The events are distinguished in the long paragraph by asterisks with colorful glowing spheres around them, looking like jellyfish  floating amidst the words.

Oakland Summer School

print design / print strategy / print production
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The Oakland Summer School is a collaborative, non-institutional space of gathering and study organized by a group of Oakland-based activists, artists, and educators. We have designed and produced a series of posters and pieces of printed ephemera to help promote, support, and facilitate Oakland Summer School’s gatherings, study groups, and expansive programming.
Fall, 2017 – ongoing

www.oaklandsummerschool.org

Thank you to Laura Nelson, China Okoye, Melissa Mack, and all of the organizers and sponsors for all of their effort in making the Oakland Summer School a continued space of study and warmth, and for all of your enthusiasm in always supporting experimentation.
A stack of programs for the Wattis Institute reading group. Each program is a different autumnal color, and covered with cascading glyphs that surround the even titles.

The Wattis Institute

print design / print production
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Inhabiting the font designed by David Reinfurt for The Wattis Institute, we have made a number of assets that have helped expand the reaches of their visual identity through exhibitions, the year long reading group, and programming in the bar. In depth conversation, research, and programming are apart of the Wattis’ DNA, and we continue to help find surfaces and places for this language to live and be distributed.
Summer, 2019 – Ongoing

www.wattis.org

Thank you to Jeanne Gerrity, Christopher Squire, and Diego Villalobos for their perspectives and guidance through all of these projects.
A bright white book cover that says Lets Be Frank by Anna Wolfe-Pauly. the text is framed by an expressive series of arrows meant to resemble those that illustrate wind direction in weather maps.

Let's Be Frank

publication design / print strategy / print production / workshop
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“A guide on how to develop a relationship with weather. This text is based on an observational legend named Frank who is well known in meteorological circles for how he tracks his relationship with sunlight. Broadly, the guide book makes a proposal for how we may build communication through attention, intimacy, and feeling. It suggests a new set of terms and practices for engaging with the weather as a psychic leader. It commands air as that which allows our conditions of being and outlines a methodology for how to attend to it through our bodies. This guide recognizes that the capacity of the image of weather functions differently than the capacity of the body’s experience of weather. The image is a delayed, reconstituted, and portable version of the weather that is separate from weather's immersive and tangential way. We see an image of a weather system moving across an entire region. Where is it that the image is made? Another kind of knowledge is amassed by weather and it happens in sensation.”

We worked closely with Anna Wolfe-Pauly on this project for over a year, expanding the process of designing the book into a series of workshops, gatherings, and talks, inviting the public into Anna’s observation based philosophy, creating participatory feedback loops that informed the design of the publication. A diagrammatic table of contents that reflected the arrows used to illustrate wind patterns was first developed as a waterproof poster, and was later expanded to be used as a navigation system for the book, and for a series of posters inviting people to various programs associated with the project. Throughout the project Anna wrote “fan beams” or letters to the elusive Frank, that served as scores for performative readings, as well as ephemera that made up part of the Let’s Be Frank subscription service. For those who signed up, they received all pieces of print ephemera produced from the project and the book, all contained inside of a screen printed pillowcase with the quote “We move in and out of one another’s fog, whose fog is who's is indistinguishable.”
Spring, 2018

www.anna.wolfe-pauly.com

Thank you Anna for your energy, thought, patience, ability to listen both near and far, and for the endless care that you dedicated to making all of this together. And thank you to 2727 California Street for hosting all of the programming.
A book splayed open fills the frame, with an image of colorful candles on top of newspaper on the left, and on the right lays a smaller book consisting only of small red type, describing all of the images contained in the larger book.

Resting Eye Monument

publication design / print production
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Resting Eye Monument is a catalog of images and an aleatory index, documented once, twice, three times removed, from a performance that took place in The Terminal Sales Building in Seattle, WA, on May 1st, 2016 during the May Day Protest. Edited by Jessa Carter, the unbound book of folded sheets comprises of images by Jessa Carter, kb Thomason, Jillayne Hunter, Christopher Williams, Lucien Pellegrin, and Sohail Fazluddin, with captions by Jenn Hotes and Kim Upstill. The images correspond to captions within the index, creating a delicate precarity in the pages remaining unbound… if disheveled both image and index will spiral into poetic abstraction. The title of the book is hidden and dispersed throughout the creases in the spine. Pages of the book have been used as wall coverings, wrapping paper, placemats, and eventually a score for further performances.
Summer, 2019

Thank you Jessa from the bottom of our souls for all of the energy and effort you have devoted to all of the phases and revelations of this project.
A face with a sassy expression made of various vegetables cut in half, floats  over foliage behind a green gate.

Dropbox Dot Design

photography / content development
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A selection of images made for Dropbox’s Dot Design site. Images were made to abstractly illustrate through metaphor, visual experimentation, and wit, a series of editorial articles about everything from design research, to how to make your voice heard within a large company. The guiding visual concept for Dropbox’s imagery is “making the ordinary extraordinary.” Often in close collaboration with Gabie Matte from Dropbox’s brand design studio, we’ve made improvisational images using materials, objects, and “visual tricks” that were close at hand and accessible, often photographing on walks together and outside the studio.
Spring, 2019 – Ongoing

www.dropbox.design

Thank you to Gabie Matte for their efforts and thoughtfulness in collaborating, and for inviting us to be apart of this project.
A yellow book cover mostly covered by bold black type that spans around to the back cover. In the background of the text, part of a grainy seashell can be seen.

Open Enough to Look Into

publication design / print production
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A collaboration between Mascot and Publication Studio SF, featuring work by Clyde Lanier, Ellie Hunter, Jen Shear and Sissòn with text written by Celia Lesh. The publication consists of four individual artist signatures, combined into one publication, held together by a bright yellow acetate cover and Celia’s essay tucked inside. Each signature functions as a chapter solely focused on one of the four artists, offering glimpses into their research, supplementary reading, collected imagery, etc. that were informing their work at that moment. Double-printed scans of seashells span each of the artists’ signatures, providing a soft, protective outer layer for the work living inside.
Summer, 2018

www.mascot-studio.com

Thank you Hana Cohn for your sharp editorial perspective and fastidious care, and Jenna Jorgensen and Mindy Seu for your incredible support and willingness to double-print the covers and collate into the wee hours of the night. Thank you to Fennis Brown and Lauren Ardis for inviting us into this project, and all of their efforts in organizing and facilitating this publication. Thank you Clyde, Ellie, Jen, Sissòn, and Celia, for your openness and trust.
A psychedelic looking abalone shell printed in a light purple and sea green, covers most of a pearlescent poster. The text on the poster describes the practice of our studio, Companion-Platform.

Irridesence

print design / print production
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A description of a non-existent museum that's attempting to preserve the visual experience of iridescence.
Fall, 2019

This piece was originally conceived to be our second business card.
a small yellow sign emerges from a dense thicket of various coastal plants. The sign both warns and educates visitors of ticks, and has a black and white illustration of a tick on the left side.

Decentralized Web Camp

identity design / wayfinding / print design / digital strategy
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Taking after its previous incarnation as the Decentralized Web Summit, the Decentralized Web Camp sought to gather many of the worlds programmers, thinkers, engineers, activists, and builders who are working to decentralize the internet from structures of power that largely control it today. Organized by the Internet Archive, the camp was held in a coastal landscape about an hour south of San Francisco. Programming was emergent and self-organized by participants, and responded to the infrastructure present on site. We designed a dynamic and flexible signage system that could primarily be produced at the camp to respond to the changing needs of the organizers. The identity we created used orientation devices as a part of its DNA since all participants were arriving to a place in an expansive landscape they were unfamiliar with. In addition to directing attendees to workshops and facilities, we made a series of signs dispersed throughout the landscape and on trails that pointed attention to the surrounding environment, including information about plants and animals native to the Northern California coastline.
Summer, 2019

www.archive.org

Thank you to Wendy Hanamura for inviting us to contribute to this incredible gathering, and for all of their patience and thoughtfulness in working on this project together. Also a huge thanks to Amir Saber Esfahani for their energy, thought, and willingness to help construct a large portion of the signage at his studio.
A deep cobalt blue cover of a exhibition catalog is splayed open, showing Bothe the front and back cover. The  cover has the name of the artist: Lydia Ourahmane, and the title of the exhibition at The Wattis Institute, Solar Cry, both in English, and in Arabic.

Lydia Ourahmane: صرخة شمسية  Solar Cry

print design / print production
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A free exhibition booklet containing an essay written by the show's curator, Anthony Huberman, both in English and translated into Arabic, and screenshots from Lydia's travels to the desert. Lydia's “devastating blue,” which illuminates the entirety of the exhibition, is echoed in the cover for the printed program. The program is enveloped in the blue exhibition space, serving as a fragment to be taken away by visitors. The essay follows a g clef that moves down through the left margin, and determines the baseline for the text. A-flat serves as a baseline for the Arabic text, and B-flat as a half-step in the baseline for the English text, creating a subtle dissonance and disruption between the two languages.
Spring, 2020

www.wattis.org

Thank you Diego Villalobos and Anthony Huberman for all of your patience and care in working on this project.
A white cover to a tall and narrow exhibition catalog for a show at Minnesota Street Projects.  Orange, green, and blue letters are stacked vertically along the left edge, all acronyms for the organizations involved in the exhibition.

CE X CG X NIAD at Minnesota Street Projects

print design / print production
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A free exhibition catalog made to accompany the show CE x CG x NIAD at Minnesota Street Projects in San Francisco, CA, June 1–29, 2019. Florence and Elias Katz founded Creative Growth in 1974 in response to statewide cuts in services for adults with disabilities. In 1983 they opened Creativity Explored in San Francisco and in 1984 they went on to create NIAD (Nurturing Independence Through Artistic Development) in Richmond. Although they operate separately, the three art studios share a common mission to serve and support artists with developmental and intellectual disabilities by providing professional studio space, exhibition opportunities, and representation. This exhibition was the first time the three studios shared a gallery, celebrating a wide array of work that filled every corner of the space. The exhibition catalog served as an index for the pieces in the show, and uses a simple color coding system to decipher the three studios within shared language and a common mission.
Spring, 2019

www.minnesotastreetproject.com

Thank you to Megan Mirro for inviting us to be apart of this project, and for their efforts in assisting with production!
A white exhibition catalog cover floats over an abstract black and white image. The catalog has the artists name on it, Vincent Fecteau, along with three images of the same sculpture from three different perspectives along the bottom. The exhibition took place at The Wattis Institute.

Vincent Fecteau

print design / print production
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On the occasion of Vincent Fecteau’s first solo exhibition in San Francisco in 17 years, we made a free exhibition booklet containing an essay by Anthony Huberman and images that expand and contract, all from a revolving perspective peering into one of Vincent’s sculptures.
Fall, 2019

www.wattis.org

Thank you to Anthony Huberman for all of their patience and care in working on this project.
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This site was last updated on: March, 17, 2021

Typefaces: Pirelli Light by Jung-Lee Type Foundry, and gc-16 mono by Bold Decisions.

Color Accessibility: Test 1, Test 2.

Website Maintenance:
-We are continuing to add alt-text to all of our images in the project sliders and in our windows.

I began the day wanting to bring into convergence three activities of being—what I’d seen, what I’d read, and what I’d drawn—and to say about these acts how they made lines in the world that ran alongside other lines, and how all these lines together made environments of the earth, where I could put my body and you could put yours, and these would be lines always entwined because there was little if anything you could say or make without calling forth other lines, and this was how you knew you were where you were and the ground was worth cultivating and that there was life beneath the ground.

–Renee Gladman, Untitled (Environments), e-flux Journal