The Portland Stamp Company The Portland Stamp Company

Stamp No. 026Rick Valicenti

Rick Valicenti is a Chicago-based designer, producer, director, and collaborator known for his experimentation and early adoption of technology. Currently working with a wide network of designers and artists. Formerly the founder and design director of Thirst, a venerable Chicago design studio. Valicenti is a recipient of the AIGA medal, 2006, and the Smithsonian Cooper Hewitt National Design Award, 2011.

Valicenti shares a studio with Anna Mort and together provide mindful design.

Have you designed a stamp before?

No, with one minor exception. The Thirst logo was placed on a USPS stamp which we printed out and used for postage, 

Does that count?


I think so. What was the most interesting or fun aspect of designing a poster stamp? 

Just receiving the invitation was both daunting and exhilarating.

Riding those emotional waves simultaneously was the real thrill.


What unique challenges did it present?

Designing a graphic that could work well as a cut out stamp-size display and something that could work as a gridded pattern image.

Personally I was challenged by also wanting this design to reflect this moment in time for me—a trophy case of masks and a few bruises after 40 years of (f)un-employment.


Tell us about the art. Did you create something new for this stamp?

Yes, in fact the ‘art’ was designed specifically for The Portland Stamp series using ProCreate for the very first time on my iPad.

truth: I have not returned to the iPad or ProCreate since… perhaps this is a graphic designer’s version of dropping the mike.


Anything else? 

I am so grateful to you, Joshua, for the opportunity and especially for your enduring prodding supportive patience with me.

thank you

Printed offset digital with spot iridescent varnish and a letterpress overprint. Hand signed and embossed by the artist (detail shown here).

detail of rick valicenti hand emboss



Stamp title:
To Endure

Portrait of Rick below.


rick valicenti portrait

The Artist Series

An ongoing collaboration with invited designers, artists, and writers who create original work for an unusual form: the poster stamp. The stamps are printed on lickable, gummed paper and pinhole perforated by hand on our vintage machines. The sheets are signed and numbered by the artist, and released in editions of 100. Suitable for framing. View full series.

Upcoming releases include Bwana Spoons, Ka’ila Farrell Smith, and Art Chantry