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bass portait

Top 5 Saul Bass Movie Titles

In our February issue, on newsstands now, we celebrate the life and work of the great graphic designer Saul Bass on the publication of a new monograph Saul Bass: A Life in Film and Design by Jennifer Bass and Pat Kirkham. Better yet, though our Take Me Home contest, you can win a copy of your own, making your coffee table the envy of all your pals. Though we love the logos, type, and printed matter that made Bass one of the titans of mid-century design, the man's true genius lay in the movie title sequences he did in the 50s, 60s. We count down the top five movie credits of his career, essentially the best in all of film history.
January 17, 2012
ParisvsNewYork cover

Paris Versus New York

It's rare that a series of visual puns has much of a shelf life, but Paris Versus New York, a punchy book of illustrations comparing and contrasting the two cities from Vahram Muratyan merits repeated reading. His keen eye and flat, graphic style both work in the service of some pretty incisive criticism. Finding equivalents, contradictions, and remarkable similarities in the unique cultures of each place, Muratyan feels more like a crack pop ethnographer than gimmick artist. Check out the slideshow that follows to see how the City of Light stacks up against the Big Apple. You might think you know both, but I guarantee that you'll be surprised by this deft little book, which is out January 31st from Penguin. Images Reprinted by arrangement with Penguin, A member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc., from "Paris versus New York" by Vahram Muratyan Copyright (c) 2011 by Vahram Muratyan.
January 6, 2012
de stijl arcade

The Story of De Stijl

The threads of turn-of-the-20th century radicalism in the arts and design have by now pretty much been woven into one broad yarn: capital-M Modernism. But the new book The Story of De Stijl: Mondrian to Van Doesburg by Jans Janssen and Michael White offers a studied look at one of those threads, and ultimately argues that the Dutch art, design, and furniture of De Stijl—like Dadism in Switzerland, Futurism in Italy, the Viennese Secession, other national modern movements—is more strange, and thorny than the going narrative suggests. In a compelling trek through the key figures, manifestos, and designs, The Story of De Stijl offers a richly illustrated vision of what animated a coterie of thinkers, makers, and artists in the teens, 20s, and 30s in Holland. The book is out from Abrams in early December for $45, but have a look at our sneak peek at an excellent present for the design lover on your list.
November 22, 2011
DIYFurniture High Res Cover

DIY Furniture

We are quite excited to share a new book from Laurence King Publishing called DIY Furniture: A Step-by-Step Guide by Christopher Stuart of Luur Design. The real coup in this book, however, is not that it comes with a bunch of ideas for desks, and sofas, and chairs, but that they tell you how to make objects by established furniture designers. New York stars Rich Brilliant Willing make an appearance, as do Peter Marigold and Lindsey Adelman and Bec Brittain. The book is well laid out, useful, and inspiring, with projects that even a novice such as I am tempted to try. The furniture itself is on the inexpensive side, and best of all, nothing is made from milk crates. DIY Furniture is out this month and costs $25. Read on for an exclusive look at what's inside.
October 18, 2011
SOY CUBA COVER

Movie Posters of Soy Cuba

If movie posters are essentially advertisements to get you into the theater, the Hollywood versions splashed with matinee-idol close-ups and 100-point typefaces, then the moody, highly graphic design on display in the new book Soy Cuba: Cuban Cinema Posters from After the Revolution is a queer kind of commercial indeed. The posters reprinted here seem less interested in packing the house than functioning as small, playfully abstracted works of art in and of themselves. They hail from the late 1950s through the 1970s and taken as a whole they seems to suggest a parallel universe of movie posters untethered from a commercial drive, floating somewhere closer to book jacket design or museum-worthy art posters. Have a look at our slideshow for an excellent preview of what's inside Soy Cuba. The book is out at the end of the month from Trilce Ediciones.
October 6, 2011
Knoll Textile Cover

Knoll Textiles

The roster of furniture designers who have graced the factories of Knoll is startling: Saarinen, Platner, Bertoia, Breuer. But the textile designers like Marianne Strengell, Evelyn Hill Anselevicius, and Eszter Haraszty so responsible for the warp and weft of mid-century modernism get shorter shrift. Knoll Textiles: 1945-2010, due out August 31st from Yale University Press in association with the Bard Graduate Center, hopes to rectify this. At over 400 pages, this volume accompanies the exhibit of the same name that ran at Bard this summer. Knoll Textiles is edited by Earl Martin with essays from design curators and critics like Paul Makovsky of Metropolis and Bobbye Tigerman of LACMA. My colleague Miyoko Ohtake did a great slideshow and interview with Makovsky in May. Now fans of the exhibit from which the book was taken can get the whole story. 
August 22, 2011
City Notes Cover

City Notes: San Francisco

A very unusual guide book came across my desk last week. And though City Notes: San Francisco by Jesse Coburn from Terry Warner Press is certainly a beautiful object (dig the clean design by Martin Schapiro, the photos by Constance Smith, and the engraved wooden cover by Dave Marcoullier) it's a puzzling little artifact of Coburn's love of San Francisco. You see, there are no addresses listed, the spots chosen are lovely but obscure and strange, and the histories provided of each location defy any guide book convention. If a Frommer's guide is a city's greatest hits, City Notes is a mixtape of deep cuts wilfully free of liner notes.
August 9, 2011
Future Beauty covers

Future Beauty

Because the September 2011 issue is dedicated to the influence of Japanese design (architecture, craft, and industrial design primarily), we'd be utterly remiss if we didn't give a nod to the tremendous influence of Japanese fashion. Last year the Barbican Art Gallery launched a show called Future Beauty: 30 Years of Japanese Fashion, and though the show closed in February, the excellent catalog by Akiko Fukai, Barbara Vinken, Susanna Frankel, and Hirofumi Kurino, still offers a stunning glimpse at how designers like Rei Kawokubo, Junya Watanabe, Issey Miyake, and others have changed the face of high fashion. Have a look at the slideshow that follows and marvel at some of the most stunning design to come out of Japan.
August 3, 2011
more favorite play book spaces

More Favorite Play! Spaces

Our September 2011 issue is about to hit newsstands, but we're not finished celebrating play (the theme of our July/August 2011 issue). Earlier this week we featured five fantastic projects from the new Gingko Press book Play! Indoor and Outdoor, and here we highlight five more favorites from the 58 projects included in the book.
August 1, 2011
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