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Posts Tagged ‘design’

What We’re Loving: Works That Work

April 19, 2013 | by

nightattheoperaYesterday I was handed the first issue of a Dutch magazine that bills itself as “a kind of National Geographic of design.” Oddly, the design of Works That Work (in print) leaves much to be desired: it’s the size and shape of a puffy playbill. But there is an online edition, and the features range from an interview with the translator Linda Asher to an article on battlefield cooking to an investigation of that crowd-management fad, the fly in the urinal. (Yes, it’s published in English.) —Lorin Stein

Every now and then, I go back to my copy of Musicality, a collaboration between Barbara Guest and June Felter, and this week was one of those times (maybe it’s the advent—finally!—of spring that drew me to the book). Published in 1988 by Kelsey St. Press, it combines a single poem by Guest interspersed among pages of Felter’s pencil drawings of rural landscapes—scribbled trees, grasses, and hillocks; knotted loops for clouds; and the simplest geometry to describe farmhouses. Guest’s lines likewise employ the smallest marks, the slightest movements to render nature’s, well, musicality: “Hanging apples half notes / in the rhythmic     ceiling    red flagged / rag clefs / notational margins / the unfinished / cloudburst / a barrel cloud fallen from the cyclone truck / they hid under a table the cloud / with menacing disc / Leafs ripple in the dry cyclonic.” It doesn’t hurt that the book’s cover stock has a very pleasing, toothy texture (Fabriano Artistico, for you paper fiends out there), so it’s doubly nice to pick up. —Nicole Rudick Read More »

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Books for Readers, Nonreaders

September 21, 2012 | by

  • A retired bibliophile in Manila has turned his home into a public library. He also runs a “book bike” to book-deprived areas. “As a book caretaker, you become a full man,” he says.
  • Remembering the late, legendary Knopf editor Ashbel Green.
  • Authors: consider working naked.
  • Books for nonreaders. (Not illiterates; those who don't enjoy books.)
  • From MoMA, the A to Z of alphabet books.
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    Tonight! Join Us at the Strand

    June 13, 2012 | by

    Don’t miss it! Tonight at 7 P.M., join us for the kickoff of our event series at the Strand, where (in addition to enjoying performances, mingling, and wine) we’ll announce the finalists of our tote-bag contest.

    To celebrate our collaboration, we asked you to submit designs for our newest tote bag. And did you deliver! Below, find a few of our favorites! (Thanks, everyone!)

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    On the Shelf

    July 13, 2011 | by

    A cultural news roundup.

  • Theodore Roszak, a chronicler of the 1960s who coined the term counterculture, died this week at 77.
  • Hugh Grant for Prime Minister.
  • Zimbabwean author NoViolet Bulawayo has won the 2011 Caine Prize for African Writing for her short story “Hitting Budapest.”
  • Penelope Lively calls Kindle readers “bloodless nerds.”
  • In the spirit of “misery loves company,” the Web site My Unfinished Novels encourages frustrated writers to “share your creative failures.”
  • Science fiction and religion.
  • Harry Potter and religion.
  • Miami artist Agustina Woodgate calls herself a “poetry bomber”: she sews tiny bits of poetry into garments in area thrift stores. “Sewing poems in clothes is a way of bringing poetry to everyday life just by displacing it, by removing it from a paper to integrate it and fuse it with our lives. Sometimes little details are stronger when they are separated from where they are expected to be,” she says.
  • A brief history of title design.
  • Reading retreats: book lovers’ dream vacations.
  • Bill Keller is tired of his reporters who want to write books.
  • Daphne DuMaurier’s Rebecca gets the Broadway treatment, for good or ill.
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    Tailor-Made

    June 9, 2011 | by

    Richard Anderson.

    “Wanted,” the advertisement read, “sixteen- or seventeen-year-old apprentice cutter for Savile Row firm. Energetic … Intelligent … Smart appearance …” I was skeptical (what the hell was a cutter?) but Dad made the call and we were granted an appointment at ten the following Tuesday. I had never heard of Huntsman before. For that matter, I am not sure that I had ever heard of Savile Row.”

    So began, somewhat ignominiously, Richard Anderson’s career as a bespoke tailor. Today, Anderson is “The King of Savile Row,” as The Independent called him—but in 1982 he was a teenager with failing grades who showed up for an interview in white socks, a short-sleeved shirt, and a school blazer.

    Anderson’s memoir, Bespoke: Savile Row Ripped and Smoothed, has been called the Kitchen Confidential of the tailoring world, an insider’s look at the industry and one that exposes a certain amount of its foibles and eccentricity. But what’s even more of a revelation than the ins and outs of cutting and fitting is the sheer thoroughness of the traditional apprenticeship, which Anderson served. Even thirty years ago when Anderson got his start, the kind of ground-up dues paying he describes was on the wane; in an era of overnight success, it’s almost unimaginable.

    It’s no shock that, since everything’s ripe for the TV picking, even Savile Row got its own BBC special—a reality program that made it look, says Anderson, “quite glamorous.” And as a result, he now gets some ten or fifteen letters a weeks from prospective employees. However, their notion of apprenticeship doesn’t involve sweeping or cutting, let alone the kind of respect for institutional authority that was the backbone of Anderson’s training. “They tend to think they’d quite enjoy designing,” Anderson explains dryly, adding that they also tend to be older and “there’s a big difference between a seventeen-year-old kid just out of school and a twenty-something who’s seen a bit of the world.” Especially one in today’s England, he need not add.

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    Charlotte Strick Talks to ‘The Atlantic’

    March 11, 2011 | by

    Our wonderful art editor Charlotte Strick took some time to talk to The Atlantic about her work as a graphic designer:

    What’s a design trend that you wish would go away?

    It’s not so much a design “trend”: the lack of quality in trade book publishing. Because of the rising costs of printing, many publishers are now using thinner paper stocks for book interiors. The paper feels cheap and there's more "show through" of the text from the previous page. Those of you who still enjoy holding a good old-fashioned book in your hands will know what I'm talking about. You really can feel the difference.

    What’s an idea you became fascinated with but that ended up taking you off track?

    Do ex-boyfriends count?

    I’d say so! Read the rest of Charlotte’s interview here.

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