Jianping He is a Chinese designer based in Berlin. After studying graphic design at the China Academy of Art, He earned an MFA from the Berlin University of the Arts, and a PhD in cultural history from the Free University of Berlin. He has explained that the German emphasis on “independent thinking and play” has counterbalanced the academic discipline of his Chinese education, and his designs negotiate between these different intellectual traditions. In restrained color palettes, he executes bold poster designs with exacting precision, often incorporating both Chinese characters and Roman letters.
In 2002, he founded Hesign, a Berlin studio which designs not only posters, books, and corporate identities, but also curates exhibitions and organizes cultural events. Hesign has since added branches in Shanghai and Hanzhou. Through the studio, He has designed posters for clients like AIG, the Asian Culture and Arts Development Alliance, the Guangzhou Asian Games, and the China Academy of Art. He has also created promotional materials for contemporary artists like Keith Goddard and Yang Fudong, and curated shows for Niklaus Troxler, Xu Jiang, the Warsaw International Poster Biennale, and others. His work has appeared in solo shows in Tokyo, Nanjing, Ljubljana, Hong Kong, and Essen, many of which He curated himself. His designs have received a host of awards, including first place at the 2005 Lahti International Poster Biennial, a silver medal at the 2010 New York ADC, and awards for Typographic Excellence from the Type Directors Club in 2007 and 2010.