Matt Dunne: Your new Manifest Creative Designer

Published on Jan 28, 2014

Matt Dunne is a senior Graphic Design major, a writer and designer for, a bass guitarist in the band Churchkey, and he works at Columbia’s Office of Student Communications. He also enjoys eating entire pizzas in one sitting, watching “the Room” repeatedly, and scavenging for good records. 

If that wasn't enough, he's also the 2014 Manifest Creative Designer.

What motivated you to compete?

Knowing students from my school could be the lead designer on an event that was all over the city of Chicago was very inspiring to me, especially when I was just starting out here. As I got more competent as a designer I started to make a goal that I would be the designer of Manifest one year. So this year I entered, and I actually won! I probably would have ran last year as well, but I always thought you had to be a senior to run [for Manifest Creative Designer]. The prize money was also a good motivator for me to give it a shot!

Every Creative Director has brought some new idea, concept, or look to the face of Manifest. Can you give us any insight into what you are planning?

Well, I don’t know too much yet, but event-wise there has been talk of trying to make the world record largest paper airplane!

In addition, Jones College Prep has already offered to help by creating work to hang from one side of the street to the other featuring elements of my design.

Another theme I’m hoping to include is a large feeling of customization throughout the festival, in which people can make their own planes, stars, shirt designs or other pieces that utilize parts of my identity.

What inspired your Manifest design?

I think a few events from last year were inspiring to me. I used to work at the Loft and we had an event where people could make a hanging star/mobile sort of thing and it was interesting to me that each of them was different than the other. The Hack Your Shirt events the Workroom does to allow people to modify their shirts was another thing I found very cool.

For my star, the design was predominantly inspired by the look of the German paper star lanterns at the Kriskindlemart in Daly Plaza every winter; I must admit it was my girlfriend who gave me the suggestion to use them though!

Other things like cartoons/animated movies, movie title designs, album artwork, concert posters, comic books, and sci-fi movies have been my main sources of inspiration all my life.