Monday, 12:05am
17 March 2014

Books received #7

Pop Art Design, The Magazine 19, Punk 45, D&AD 2013 and REsolutions

Here are brief reviews of some titles that recently arrived at Eye’s Shoreditch office.

Pop Art Design (Vitra Design Museum, £51) is a large-format paperback heaving with colourful imagery. Published by Vitra Design Museum (in collaboration with the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark, £45), the book / catalogue accompanied an exhibition by the same name in Denmark and more recently at London’s Barbican Centre. Familiar names such as Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein are included, but the book also includes striking images by Ettore Sottsass, Saul Steinberg, Saul Bass, Ed Ruscha, Ray Johnson, Alexander Girard and Richard Hamilton, currently the subject of several exhibitions in London.

The book includes an extensive and enticing selection of typographic and graphic works by architect / interior designer Girard. These include Alphabet (1952), cover designs for A. I. A. monthly bulletin (1953) and Gentry magazine (1955), posters for Herman Miller Inc. (1961) and Braniff International (1965) and printed textiles. Girard’s mural design for the New York restaurant La Fonda del Sol (1959) is particularly interesting. The imagery complements nine essays by several different writers, including regular Eye contributor Steven Heller.

Alexander Girard’s mural design for the New York restaurant La Fonda del Sol, 1959, in Pop Art Design.
Top: colourful spreads in the opening of D&AD 2013 were generated using code to represent the data of the 42 countries.

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Pop Art Design, cover.

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The Magazine 19 (G colon, 20,000원) is a Korean book about magazine publishing that features The Plant, Gather Journal, Adventice, Emigre, Wrap, Mono.Kultur, Eye, Frame, +81, F.R.David, Slanted, Open, The Paris Review, Idea, Mark, IDPure, Printed Pages, Colors and Gagarin. It uses a mixture of PDFs of spreads from the publications and photographs of printed magazines accompanied by short interviews, in both English and Korean, with the designers, editors and publishers behind them.

Spreads from The Magazine 19 featuring Emigre no. 19 …

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… and Eye no. 83 vol. 21 …

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and The Paris Review.

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Punk 45: The Singles Cover Art of Punk 1976-1980 (Soul Jazz Books, £25 / $39.95) edited by Jon Savage and Stuart Baker. After Savage’s quick rundown of punk’s history and Baker’s shorter secondary introduction, Punk 45 develops into a kind of catalogue of picture sleeves interspersed with short interviews – Gee Vaucher (Crass, see Eye 33) and Peter Saville are among those included. Many sleeves are without complete design credits, giving the impression that the book is aimed at punk fans rather than design enthusiasts.

Spread from Punk 45 showing cover art for The Users and Wreckless Eric, 1977.

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The D&AD 2013 annual (Taschen, £44.99) is designed by Fleur Isbell of Wolff Olins. The design gives the impression that each submission is of equal value and for its size, the 592-page book is lightweight – printed on 100 per cent recycled, woodfree uncoated paper made in Lenzing, Austria. Colourful spreads in the opening pages of the book were generated using code to represent the data of the 42 countries from which winning works were submitted. The cover represented 196 independent nations, a visualisation of D&AD’s ‘diverse global community’ in which latitude determined the horizon line in the images and time and meteorological data determined the colours.

Following a number of short opinion pieces by experts from various design disciplines, the largely visual book begins with screenshots of Alex McDowell’s work for Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Fight Club and Watchmen – McDowell is the recipient of the 2013 President’s Award (see ‘LA art school’ in Eye 60) – and continues in its usual fashion, with pencil-winners and nominees from advertising, design and crafts.

Spread showing ‘Tamabi’, a series of ads for the Tama Art University, MR_DESIGN agency (left) and PechaKucha Night Nagoya, designed by Peace Graphics (right).

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The D&AD 2013, Taschen, £44.99. Design: Fleur Isbell (Wolff Olins).

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REsolutions: REsponsibility in graphic design (Aalto University, €24) is a book designed, written and conceived by MA students from Aalto University in Helsinki, Finland. Concerned with responsibility in graphic design, the book begins with a response to Ken Garland’s ‘First Things First’ manifesto from 1964 and the follow-up in 1999 (see ‘First Things First Manifesto 2000’ in Eye 33) and continues with a series of interviews with lecturers and design professionals as well as short essays, illustrations and case studies.

REsolutions: REsponsibility in graphic design, Aalto University, with wrap poster cover designed by Pia Sissala.

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Eye is the world’s most beautiful and collectable graphic design journal, published quarterly for professional designers, students and anyone interested in critical, informed writing about graphic design and visual culture. It is available from all good design bookshops and online at the Eye shop, where you can buy subscriptions and single issues. For a quick flick through the latest issue, see ‘Eye before you buy’ on Vimeo.

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