Martin Venezky is the mastermind and master designer behind Appetite Engineers, an internationally recognized, San Francisco-based design firm that has been running on all cylinders since it was founded in 1997.

At that time Venezky was celebrated for his design of Speak Magazine, an adventurous and groundbreaking quarterly. But soon Appetite Engineers expanded into exhibition design for Reebok (1998, 1999), revolutionary print work for the Sundance Film Festival (2001), and award-winning catalogs for the Wattis Institute, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art and the International Center of Photography. Recently, we have been called on to bring to life books on an exceptional range of topics from sports and popular culture to fine photography and art.

Venezky’s team is dedicated to craft, process and detail. Our work explores intricacy and complexity, and we allow our explorations to flow in and out of different media — drawing, collage, photography, sculpture. Hand skills mix with digital skills to produce the unexpected and dramatic. This process comes through in our hand-crafted illustrations for the pages of Wired and the New York Times, and our large-scale installations which have graced the campuses of Facebook and Adobe Systems.

Venezky earned an MFA in Design from Cranbrook Academy of Art in 1993, which followed a BFA in Visual Studies from Dartmouth College in 1979. He is currently Associate Professor in the Graduate Design Program at California College of the Arts (CCA) in San Francisco, where he has taught since 1993.

The work of Martin Venezky’s Appetite Engineers has been collected in magazines and books worldwide, and in 1997 Venezky was listed among I.D. magazine’s “ID40” list of influential designers. In 2001, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art honored Martin with an exhibition of his collected work, “Martin Venezky: Selections from the Permanent Collection of Architecture and Design.” It Is Beautiful…Then Gone, a monograph of Martin’s work, has been published by Princeton Architectural Press.

Awards

2014
AIGA: “50 Books 50 Covers” selects The Wes Anderson Collection (Abrams).
2014
7x7 MAGAZINE: “Best of San Francisco” awarded to Facebook Arcade Signage.
2011
AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF MUSEUMS: “Frances Smyth-Ravenal Prize for Excellence in Design” awarded to The Mexican Suitcase (International Center of Photography: Steidl).
2008
NEW YORK BOOK FAIR: First Place, Special Trade Category awarded to Burning Book (Simon & Schuster).
2005
AIGA: “50 Books 50 Covers” selects It Is Beautiful…Then Gone (Princeton Architectural Press).
2005
STEP MAGAZINE: “Step 100 Design Annual” selects The Push Pin Graphic (Chronicle Books).
2005
I.D. MAGAZINE: “Design Annual” Honorable Mention awarded to The Push Pin Graphic (Chronicle Books).
2002
I.D. MAGAZINE: “Design Annual” Honorable Mention awarded to Catherine Wagner: Cross Sections (San Jose Museum of Art: Twin Palms).
2001
PRINT MAGAZINE: “Regional Design Annual” selects Open: The Magazine of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
2000
AMERICAN CENTER FOR DESIGN: “100 Show” selects Open: The Magazine of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
2000
AIGA: “50 Books 50 Covers” selects Searchlight: Consciousness at the Millennium (Wattis Institute: Thames & Hudson).
2000
AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF MUSEUMS: Distinction in Museum Publication Design awarded to Open: The Magazine of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
1999
AMERICAN CENTER FOR DESIGN: “100 Show” selects Appetite Engineers Promo Book.
1999
HOW MAGAZINE: “Best of Self Promotion” selects Appetite Engineers Promo Book.
1998
AIGA: “50 Books 50 Covers” selects Bordertown (Chronicle Books).
1998
I.D. MAGAZINE: “Design Annual” Design Achievement awarded to Bordertown (Chronicle Books).
1998
AMERICAN CENTER FOR DESIGN: “100 Show” selects Bordertown and Speak Magazine.
1997
I.D. MAGAZINE: “Design Annual” Honorable Mention awarded to Speak Magazine.
1997
I.D. MAGAZINE: “I.D. Forty” selects Martin Venezky as one of its Contemporary Design Innovators.
1996
AMERICAN CENTER FOR DESIGN: “100 Show” selects Speak Magazine.
1995
AMERICAN CENTER FOR DESIGN: “100 Show” selects SFAI Young Artists Poster.
1994
AMERICAN CENTER FOR DESIGN: “100 Show” selects Theatre Zeebelt Subscription Card.
1993
AMERICAN CENTER FOR DESIGN: “100 Show” selects Ed Fella Announcement Card.
1992
PENTAGRAM PRIZE: First Place awarded to essay “What I Know About Photography.”

Selected Exhibitions, Lectures and Events

2014–2015
Joyce C. Hall Distinguished Professor of Design, Kansas City Art Institute Kansas City MO view website
2014
ADOBE SYSTEMS: “Random Acts of Creativity” San Jose CA view website
2014
SOMARTS GALLERY: “All Possible Futures” San Francisco CA view website
2014
FÊTE DU GRAPHISME: “Paris invite le monde” Paris France view website
2013
ADOBE SYSTEMS “Drops From a Faucet into a Pool” San Francisco CA
2013
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA ARTS CENTER: “Non Serviam: New Directions in Graphic Design” Washington DC view website
2012
CHICAGO DESIGN MUSEUM: “Fresh Produced” Chicago IL view website
2012
25TH INTERNATIONAL BIENNIAL OF GRAPHIC DESIGN: “Work from California” Brno Czech Republic view website
2011
PASADENA MUSEUM OF CALIFORNIA ART: “Getting Upper” Pasadena CA view website
2010
SAN FRANCISCO MUSEUM OF MODERN ART: “75 Reasons to Live” (gallery talk) San Francisco CA view website
2010
SAN FRANCISCO MUSEUM OF MODERN ART: “The Anniversary Show” San Francisco CA view website
2009
LANDOR ASSOCIATES: “Landor Salon Series” (panel discussion on Designology) San Francisco CA view website
2008
SAN FRANCISCO MUSEUM OF MODERN ART: “Diaspora” (lecture and on-stage interview) San Francisco CA view website
2008
DENVER ART MUSEUM: Department of Design accessions full run of Speak magazine Denver CO view website
2008
FIRST CHICAGO INTERNATIONAL POSTER BIENNIAL Juror and exhibitor Chicago IL view website
2008
NEW YORK ART DIRECTORS CLUB: “Opposites Attract: Martin Venezky + Sam Potts” (public lecture) New York NY view website
2008
ANDERSON RANCH ARTS CENTER Lecture and workshop Aspen CO view website
2007
PEABODY/ESSEX MUSEUM: “Accidental Mysteries” (co-presentation with collector John Foster) Salem MA view website
2007
LABEL MAGAZINE: “Inspirational Design Happening” (public lecture) Turin Italy
2006
LOS ANGELES CONTEMPORARY EXHIBITIONS (LACE): “Draw A Line and Follow It” Los Angeles CA view website
2005
DEYOUNG MUSEUM CONNECTIONS GALLERY: “Re-Classifying History VIII: Columbus Database” (collaboration with Catherine Wagner) San Francisco CA view website
2005
PASADENA MUSEUM OF CALIFORNIA ART: “California Design Biennial” Pasadena CA
2005
SAN FRANCISCO MUSEUM OF MODERN ART: “Belles Lettres” San Francisco CA view website
2003
SAN FRANCISCO MUSEUM OF MODERN ART: “The Art of Design” San Francisco CA view website
2003
PASADENA MUSEUM OF CALIFORNIA ART: “California Design Biennial” Pasadena CA
2002
MOIS DU GRAPHISME: “East Coast West Coast: Graphistes aux états-unis” Echirolles France view website
2002
INTERNATIONAL DESIGN CENTER: “Invisible InBetween Behind Underneath” Lecture and workshop Nagoya Japan view website
2001
SAN FRANCISCO MUSEUM OF MODERN ART: “Martin Venezky: Selections from the Permanent Collection of Architecture and Design” (solo exhibition) San Francisco CA view website
2001
SOUTHERN EXPOSURE GALLERY: “Byproduct: Deviation from Design” San Francisco CA view website
2001
FABRICA: Visiting Artist Public lecture and workshop Treviso Italy
2000
COOPER HEWITT NATIONAL DESIGN MUSEUM: “First Design Triennial” Exhibition and symposium New York NY
1997
MIND THE GAP: “Underground Goes Mainstream” Public lecture and panel Amsterdam Netherlands view website
1996
COOPER HEWITT NATIONAL DESIGN MUSEUM: “Mixing Messages” New York NY view website
1996
NORTHERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY: “Designer As Author” Highland Heights KY view website

Selected Bibliography

2014
7X7 MAGAZINE: “Best of Design 2014.” view website
2012
7X7 MAGAZINE: “Exposition: Four Experts in the Art World Cull a Portfolio of the Bay Area's Finest Talents” by Julia Flagg et al.
2012
FELT & WIRE: “Type is Alive in this Letterpress Poster” by Tom Biederbeck. view website
2012
FELT & WIRE: “Martin Venezky Listens to the Sound of Type” by Tom Biederbeck. view website
2011
TYPOGRAPHIC DESIGN: FORM & COMMUNICATION by Rob Carter ( J. Wiley & Sons). view website
2011
DESIGN MATTERS: Audio Podcast hosted by Debbie Millman view website
2010
FELT & WIRE: “Martin Venezky mixes media, merges technologies & shows how print ‘comes alive’” by Emily Potts view website
2009
ACCIDENTAL MYSTERIES: “Martin Venezky and Appetite Engineers” view website
2008
ÉTAPES INTERNATIONAL: “Culture Shock” by Jérôme Corgier ( July)
2007
STEP INSIDE DESIGN: “Q&A: Sean Adams Interviews Martin Venezky,” (March/April) view website
2006
MAGCULTURE.COM: “Speak Magazine” by Jeremy Leslie
2006
FINGERPRINT: THE ART OF USING HANDMADE ELEMENTS IN GRAPHIC DESIGN by Chen Design Associates (HOW Books) view website
2005
UNDER CONSIDERATION/SPEAK UP: “Martin Venezky Speaks Up” by Silas Munro view website
2005
DESIGN OBSERVER: “Martin Venezky’s Beautiful Melancholy” by Kenneth Fitzgerald view website
2005
IT IS BEAUTIFUL...THEN GONE by Martin Venezky (Princeton Architectural Press) view website
2005
POSTER COLLECTION 11: HANDMADE by Claude Lichtenstein (Lars Muller Editions) view website
2003
GRAPHIC DESIGN FOR THE 21ST CENTURY by Charlotte + Peter Fiell (Taschen) view website
2003
THE TYPOGRAPHIC EXPERIMENT: RADICAL INNOVATION IN CONTEMPORARY TYPE DESIGN by Teal Triggs (Harper Design Int'l ) view website
2003
TYPE AT WORK: THE USE OF TYPE IN EDITORIAL DESIGN by Andreu Balius (Index Books) view website
2002
EAST COAST/WEST COAST: GRAPHISTES AUX ÉTATS-UNIS by Michel Bouvet (Les Éditions Textuel) view website
2001
PRINT MAGAZINE: “Optic Nerve: Limited Engagement” by Rick Poynor ( July/August)
2000
ISSUES: NEW MAGAZINE DESIGN by Jeremy Leslie (Laurence King Publishing) view website
2000
IDEA: “Made In America” (volume 48 number 281, July) view website
2000
DESIGN CULTURE NOW by Donald Albrecht, Ellen Lupton, Steven Skov Holt (Princeton Architectural Press ) view website
1999
ELECTRONIC WORKSHOP: TYPOGRAPHY by Yolanda Zappaterra (Rotovision Publishing) view website
1999
RADICAL GRAPHICS: GRAPHIC RADICALS by Laurel Harper (Chronicle Books) view website
1999
EMIGRE: “Notes On The West” by Martin Venezky (issue 50) view website
1999
CREATIVE REVIEW: “The Well: Environment and Creativity” (volume 19 number 8, August)
1998
CREATIVE REVIEW: “American Voyeur” by Paula Carson (volume 18 number 7, July)
1997
I.D. MAGAZINE: “I.D. 40: Martin Venezky” by Andrea Codrington (volume 44 number 1, Jan/Feb)
1997
EMIGRE: “Listening In” by Martin Venezky (number 41) view website
1993
EYE: “Way Out West,” cover story by Ethan Edwards (number 10 volume 3) view website
1993
I.D. MAGAZINE: “New and Notable” (volume 4 number 5, Sep/Oct)
1993
GRAPHIS: “What I Know About Photography” by Martin Venezky (volume 49 number 283 Jan/Feb) view website