Surface Media Announces Our Latest Initiatives

A letter from our editor-in-chief on growth across the company’s various platforms.

A letter from our editor-in-chief on growth across the company’s various platforms.

Our editor-in-chief, Spencer Bailey, sent an update out to our partners and friends earlier today detailing the latest happenings across Surface Media. With all of the changes, we wanted to update you, our readers, as well. Below, the note in full.

Dear Friends,

As the editorial director of Surface Media and editor-in-chief of Surface magazine, I’m writing to share some exciting company news.

In addition to producing the Surface print and digital content you’ve come to know and, I hope, love—including a soon-to-be unveiled Travel Issue cover story on the legendary chef Nobu Matsuhisa and a just-published Partnership “How It’s Made” with Montblanc—we’ve been busy with several major new initiatives as we prepare to celebrate our 25th anniversary next year. Here, a snapshot of the various projects:

The List by Surface
Last month, we introduced The List by Surface, our digital destination for all things Surface-approved. To date, nearly 400 best-in-class brands, firms, galleries, and institutions have signed up to be a part of this exclusive, carefully vetted network and directory. (If you’re interested in joining or learning more, please reach out to our senior manager of The List, Maria Belford, at mbelford@surfacemedia.com.)

Another recent win for Surface Media has been the acquisition and restructuring of the design management agency Culture+Commerce. Now led by director Lauren De Niro Pipher, who joins us after stints at Uber and Virgin Galactic, the firm connects companies and brands with our roster of designers who advance forward-thinking partnerships and projects. I encourage you to check out their portfolio of designers at culturecommerce.com. (Also feel free to connect with Lauren at ldpipher@surfacemedia.com.)

Watch Journal
Over at our sister magazine, Watch Journal, we have a new editor-in-chief, Stephen Watson, who was most recently a digital editor at Hearst Media and, before that, the fashion director of Men’s Vogue. Stephen brings to the publication not only his digital expertise, but also his keen eye, refined editorial instincts, and sophisticated tastes. I’m thrilled to be working with him in his new role.

Surface Studios
It’s with especially great pleasure that I can also share the new website of Surface Studios, the in-house creative agency we established 15 months ago. Surface Studios has thus far teamed up with clients including Adidas Originals, Blu Dot, Ford Motor Company, Leica, and Tumi to create a vast range of partnership content, including top-quality video shorts, custom print inserts, and robust digital packages. On the site, you can explore the various projects we’re proud to have collaborated on. (Email partnerships@surfacemedia.com to learn how to work with us.)

We continue to make strong print and digital shifts at Surface magazine, too. Since its refresh 10 months ago, SurfaceMag.com has been seeing consistent month-over-month growth. Our team is producing more and more video content—the most recent example of which features artist Carsten Höller walking us through his latest solo exhibition—and we’ve been adding new daily and weekly features, such as Designer of the Day and Watch Wednesday. Just the other week, we also began an industry-focused daily e-newsletter, Design Dispatch (sign up here).

Surface Magazine
With all these developments come some updates for the print magazine as well. In 2018, in part to highlight the collectability of the print issue, we will tap a notable photographer to capture all six of our cover subjects for the year. This tradition will continue thereafter, with a different photographer getting the annual honor. To kick things off, next year we’ll be working with Andrew Zuckerman, renowned for his striking, immaculately conceived portraits of humans and images of birds, wild animals, plant life, and outer space.

This move connects directly to our strong belief in the value of creating a high-quality print product—even as we’re increasingly focused on digital content. As a result of these changes, the magazine will have a longer page count; more engaging stories, both online and in print; and a greater number of activations, including live events such as our popular Design Dialogues series (we most recently hosted the 38th edition at the Google Launchpad space in San Francisco). We’ll also be devoting extra energy and resources toward breaking news and in-depth reporting. In addition, our newly hired design editor, Tiffany Jow, is hard at work on an overhaul of our furniture-focused Survey section, which will make its debut in the Jan./Feb. 2018 issue.

Above all, I want to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you for your support of Surface Media. Whether you’re an advertiser, a brand partner, a subscriber, a follower, a member of The List, or a guest at our events, your engagement is invaluable.

All my best,

Spencer Bailey
Editorial Director, Surface Media
Editor-in-Chief, Surface

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