LATEST FROM THE BRAND LIAISON The Brand Liaison art licensing division is well-known for a roster of artists whose licensed products consistently perform at retail, including hot newcomers Barbra Ignatiev and Dolan Geiman, California designer Debra Valencia, as well as classics from Mary Engelbreit and Gary Patterson and the trendy European brands The Happy News and Hotchpotch. Leading The Brand Liaison’s roster of artists is newcomer Barbra Ignatiev and designer Debra Valencia. With her wild-at-heart rebel spirit, Barbra Ignatiev’s Barbarian brand features colorful, bold patterns that are quickly catching the attention of many major retailers including Anthropologie, Pier 1, TJ Max, and even Staples, who is not necessarily known for devoting significant shelf space to new art brands. Debra Valencia’s blend of florals, paisleys, geometrics and other decorative motifs have been featured at all channels of retail including Walmart, Michaels, JoAnn, and specialty and Off Price stores. New collections debuting at Licensing Expo include florals, geometrics, coastal and ethnic themes, all for tabletop, home textiles and accents, wall décor, social stationery, paper goods, craft, apparel, fashion accessories, beauty products and more. Two other “hot” properties are the trendy European brands The Happy News by Emily Coxhead and Hotchpotch from the leading UK gift and greeting card company Carte Blanche. What started out as an inspiring quarterly newspaper called The Happy News has blossomed into an international licensing program that celebrates all that’s good in the world. The Happy News features bright and cheery products which combine uplifting and motivational messages with unique hand-drawn illustrations from illustrator Emily Coxhead in contemporary colors and styling. Known for design and innovation, Carte Blanche has grown the famous Me to You brand and its cute signature character, Tatty Teddy, now boasts an award winning humor brand,Violent Veg, and the trend-leading offerings from Hotchpotch. Finally, Dolan Geiman, the popular artist and sculptor whose original works of art sell for thousands of dollars is entering into licensing for the first time. Specializing in 3-dimensional mixed-media art and the reuse of found materials (reclaimed wood, salvaged metal, vintage papers), Geiman’s impressive portfolio includes large-scale wall sculptures, elaborate paper collage portraits of classic American icons landscapes, wilderness and animals. “Dolan Geiman should be on your radar as one to watch this year.” stated Marcy Silverman who has an eye for spotting emerging artists. “His one-of-a-kind original artworks are extremely so popular so licensing was a clear pathway to broaden his reach.” Featuring nature, animals and southwestern motifs, Geiman’s art translates well into home décor, wall décor and stationery as well as T-shirts and other apparel items.