Original Interview: October 2017

Studio Parasto Backman

Loving this little peek into Parasto’s brain as she aims to broaden the palette of graphic design. Starting off her own studio in 2008—Studio Parasto Backman—she loves exploring different perspectives resulting in telling unexpected stories. Working mainly in the cultural sector, it’s exciting to see Parasto tie her self initiated projects into commissioned work. 

What are some of your earliest creative memories and what lead you into design?
My first strong visual memory is from when my childhood friends from Akalla School (Akalla is a suberb of Stockholm), Midi, Maxi and Efti, became world-renowned musical artist over a night. I was impressed by the strong visual expression that surrounded them. About that time I started to express a dream of working artistically in the future.

Give us the elevator pitch on what you do.
In 2008, I founded Studio Parasto Backman. I work both solitary and in collaboration with others. 

I aim to broaden the palette of graphic design. Intersectional perspectives and methods are included in the design process and translated into praxis. I work in an explorative way and I like to work with people that might not be expected within the context of the project. Together we explore different subjects and tell stories that are perhaps not usually told. For me, my work is often about providing a space for these stories. 

Tell us about any collaborations you have been working on.
In my practice I mix commissions with projects that I initiate myself. I would particularly like to mention an ongoing collaboration with Unga Klara.

Unga Klara is one of the world’s leading norm-creative theaters that works in an investigative manner based on a child’s perspective.

As graphic designer I am a part of the entire artistic process, from beginning to end. Together we have created a new visual platform, a constantly changing form that mirrors the theater’s activities. It is a collective process with space for artistic research and the cross-pollination of different fields.

What do you think the design community could do more of to give back?
In order for us as visual communicators to be able to further the development of the field so that we can reflect the world as it is, we have to make our processes visible so that they better reflect our purposes and we should engage in dialogue about the responsibility and power that is ours.

I see graphic design and visual communication as tools for change in society.

“we should engage in dialogue about the responsibility and power that is ours”

Who would be the “dream client” that you would do anything to work for?
I wood love to work with the artist M.I.A.

Website: parastobackman.com
Instagram: @paratobackman