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Filipe Costa was born in Penedo (Aldeia do Espírito Santo) on the slopes of the Sintra Hills, overlooking the village of Colares.

He attended Technical School, where his teachers included architects and fine artists who taught him Graphic Arts techniques and, when he began his artistic career, gave him introductions to a number of publications at the end of the 1940s and beginning of the following decade.

For a long period, he worked on technical projects and the design of accessories.

Among his many achievements in the field of Design since 1957 were the design, planning and production of various stands at annual trade fairs. In 1960, he planned and organised a major exhibition including a parade of models at the Hotel Ritz, which brought him into contact with a number of artists of the era: Manuel Lapa, Luís Filipe Alves, Tomás de Melo (Tom), Carlos Rocha and Alberto Cardoso, among others.

In 1962 he collaborated in the founding of an advertising agency (Serviço de Publicidade Suíço-Português) where, as its Artistic Director, he launched various campaigns, including some organised for long term clients: Farbenfabriken Bayer AG, General Motors, Molaflex, Levi's, Massey Ferguson, Presmalte, Tody, Black & Decker, Olaio, Efacec, etc, for which some of his advertisements received awards:

  • (Molaflex, anniversary "A prodigious leap") 1st Rizzoli Prize - Italy (with photo by Nuno Calvet and copy by Luís de Sttau Monteiro1);
  • (G.M. Vauxhall Viva series), honourable mention in a 'Diário de Lisboa' Competition (with copy by José Carlos Ary dos Santos).

He organised the GM67 Prize (avant-garde art involving automobiles) at the SNBA Exhibition, and other exhibitions of GM cars, Olaio furniture and Efacec heating at the Hotel Ritz.

He was one of the principal organisers of the 1st Luso-Spanish Advertising Biennial, at which he also exhibited some of his own work. He was a speaker at and contributed images to the 22nd World Congress of IAA -International Advertising Association held in Portugal.

In 1975 he compiled, illustrated and published two electoral information booklets: "Elector's Manual, do you know how you will vote?" and "Do you know who to vote for?", an official précis of which was produced for polling stations.

He organised the 1st Portuguese Advertising Handbook for a market analysis company.

Throughout his career, his collaborators have included: Luís de Sttau Monteiro, José Carlos Ary dos Santos, Alexandre O'Neil, Pedro Lemos, José Luís Ferreira and Jerónimo Bragança, with whom he established close personal friendships.

Following the closure of that advertising agency in 1976 (the result of the economic crisis following the revolution of 25 April 1974), he started his own Graphic Design Studio:

  • he was the art editor of several magazines;
  • he planned and organised an exhibition as part of a congress held at the Rectorate of Lisbon University;
  • for a time he was visual director of the "Montiagri" Exhibition Complex;
  • he designed the corporate identity for a Group of 15 companies in Montijo;
  • he conceived advertising campaigns for various products and services.

In 1982 he changed the name of his studio to: "Filipe Costa, Designer, Lda.".

For 12 years, acting for an international hotel group, he was the exclusive designer for the Alfa Lisbon and Vilamoura Marinotel hotels, producing the latter's logo and the complete visual image for both. Also for hotels of the same Group: Estoril Sol, Hotel do Guincho and Village Cascais, he redesigned their graphic image.

On parting company with that hotel group, he collaborated with the Pestana Group on the Atlantic Garden and Alvor hotels. For the Tivoli Hotels chain he designed a new promotional graphic image for all its hotels.

Over a period of years, he created new graphic identities for numerous institutions, commercial companies, industries and an association of public works contractors, among others.

In 1993, for the Natália Correia Cultural Foundation, he conceived, planned and organised a travelling exhibition in tribute to that poet.

He followed the creative and technological development of the sector over many years, but in the light of the economic situation, changes in commercial criteria and customer loyalty at the time, and not wishing to continue, he closed his Studio in 2004.

He returned to his local roots in the Penedo - Colares area to work voluntarily with local institutions including the Parish Council through his website.

Currently, he is working on the "Experience Sintra" project, with vector illustrations of the most iconic monuments, landscapes and other details of Sintra's heritage, for reproduction as lithographs or in other mediums.

Filipe CostaFilipe Costa