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The Psychedelic Minimalist style is the ideal combination of elegance and fun, a bit like the playful little sister of Late(st) Modernist style. It is suitable for any product or service that is supposed to be fun, but not off-the-chain insane. It works for products and services that are meant to appear overtly “creative,” but not irresponsibly anarchic.

Psychedelic Minimalism would be a good web design style to use for an arts organization, such as an art gallery, art museum, or grant-funding foundation. The minimalism says, “We are professionals.” The psychedelia adds, “We are also creative.” In addition, any academic institution related to art, design, or visual communication would be a good candidate for Psychedelic Minimalist design. For example, the ideal web site for an undergraduate design department would appear well designed from a modernist perspective, but would also have a bit of psychedelic flair. This balance lets prospective students know that they will learn how to design professionally and “properly,” while still experiencing a needful dose of experimentation and play.

Because Psychedelic Minimalist style retains the grid structure of Late(st) Modernism, it is an ideal style for a catalog site, but for a younger demographic. The psychedelic colors could be shifted to muted pastels for a kid’s clothing site like Gymboree, or ramped up to bright neons for a girl’s accessory site like Sanrio.

Mashing-up two contradictory design approaches like minimalism and psychedelia seems like the result of a provocative thought experiment: Pick two extreme opposites and try to hybridize them. In the case of Psychedelic Minimalist style, the resultant hybrid allows both extremes to shine without muddying them in the middle by compromise. Bright screen colors stand out all the more because they appear as unexpected guests in an otherwise restrained compositional scenario. The stage is set for a grayscale evening, when suddenly the CMYK posse bum rushes the show! Sometimes strange bedfellows make the best bedfellows.

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