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Where Designers Read Design
Updated: 19 min 2 sec ago

Elle Decor Celebrates 25 Years, 1 Red Chair

Thu, 07/03/2014 - 13:12

It’s not easy to wish yourself happy birthday in an engaging video, but Elle Decor pulls it off with the help of a cherry red armchair. Paradoxically named for another magazine, Poltrona Frau’s “Vanity Fair” chair graced the cover of the very first stateside issue of Elle Decor (pictured) alongside coverlines including “The Simplicity of American Wood” and “America’s Love Affair with Wildflowers.” That was nearly twenty-five years ago, and the magazine rounded up some of its favorite people—from interiors all-stars such as Bunny Williams and Robert Couturier to fashion designer Carolina Herrera and longtime contributor Daniel Boulud—to celebrate the impending quarter-century milestone.

A special anniversary issue is planned for the September edition. As for that red armchair, it’s safely ensconced in the Elle Decor offices, where it will be forever be compared to its younger self. “It has more alizarin in it,” says interior designer Alessandra Branca in the video, pointing to the actual chair before turning back to one depicted in the vintage magazine in her lap. “That has more cadmium.”

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Surface Brings Back Avant Guardian Photo Contest

Wed, 07/02/2014 - 13:00

Surface magazine’s Avant Guardian contest is back—and better than ever. Among the tantalizing opportunities up for grabs in the competition (returning after a few years’ hiatus) is the chance to share an issue with the man, the myth, the Mario Testino, who is fronting the October Surface in honor of his upcoming “Alta Moda” exhibition at Dallas Contemporary.

“The contest is all about nurturing rising talent—from getting entrants’ work in front of an exceptional jury, awarding free studio time to produce an original spread in the magazine, and exhibiting their work to a crowd of influencers in New York and Miami during Art Basel,” associate editor Aileen Kwun tells us. Among those who have signed on to judge the submissions are architectural photographer Iwan Baan and Johan Lindeberg of BLk DNM. Entrants may submit a portfolio of up to ten images in one of five categories (fashion, architecture, portraiture, fine art, and technical/still life) before the July 24 deadline.

Photo: Mario Testino

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Hennessy and Pratt Institute’s ‘Wild Rabbit’ Competition Winners Announced

Tue, 07/01/2014 - 21:03

Writer Nancy Lazarus hops over to Pratt Manhattan Gallery for a creative collaboration between Pratt Institute and Hennessy V.S.


Pratt MFA student Eduardo Palma’s winning project, an interactive poster. (All photos: Pratt Institute/Peter Tannenbaum)

Pratt Institute once again teamed with Hennessy for the “Wild Rabbit” contest. The third annual competition challenged nine Pratt students from six creative disciplines to create works of art based on Hennessy’s M.O., “never stop, never settle,” symbolized by the constantly striving bunny brand icon. A panel of seven industry judges recently viewed the works at Pratt’s Manhattan Gallery and selected the top three winners, who will fly to Los Angeles next week for an event where their works will be on display in conjunction with the launch of a Shepard Fairey-designed bottle of Hennessy V.S. Multi-layered approaches marked the common themes for the winners, though they hailed from different geographic areas and interpreted the assignment differently. Here’s a look at the winning projects.

First place ($10,000): Eduardo Palma (at right), from Bogota, Colombia, MFA in communications design
His wild rabbit: Impacting culture through language
Es Mejor ser Rich que Poor (“It’s better to be rich than poor”) is the statement on Palma’s wall-size poster, set in Friz Quadrata. The surface layer shows a Latin American map in the tones of American currency, divided into cutouts of heavy cardstock.

Palma invited viewers and judges to remove the postcards, uncovering another saying, Plata or Plomo (“Money or Lead”). The quote is from Colombian drug trafficker Pablo Escobar, who enforced a bribes-or-bullets program. The bottom newsprint layer shows images in red, yellow, and blue—the colors of the Colombian flag—and depicts Escobar becoming Donald Trump.
(more…)

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Design Jobs: Heartland Brewery Group, New Relic, Next Magazine

Tue, 07/01/2014 - 18:30

This week, Heartland Brewery Group is hiring a graphic designer, and New Relic needs a graphic designer, too. Meanwhile, Next Magazine is seeking a design director, and Madison Performance Group is on the hunt for a graphic and web designer. Get the scoop on these openings and more below, and find additional just-posted gigs on Mediabistro.

Graphic Designer Heartland Brewery Group (New York, NY) Graphic Designer New Relic (San Francisco, CA) Design Director Next Magazine (New York, NY) Graphic and Web Designer Madison Performance Group (New York, NY) Exhibit Architect Designer European-Based Agency (Houston, TX)

Find more great design jobs on the UnBeige job board. Looking to hire? Tap into our network of talented UnBeige pros and post a risk-free job listing. For real-time openings and employment news, follow @MBJobPost.

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

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Frieze Taps Barber and Osgerby’s Universal Design Studio to Design London Fair

Mon, 06/30/2014 - 13:51

Now in its eleventh year, Frieze London is getting a new look. This year’s fair, which runs October 15-18 in leafy Regent’s Park, will be designed by Universal Design Studio. The creative consultancy, founded in 2011 by designers Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby to focus on architecture and interiors, takes over from fellow Londoners Carmody Groarke, who handled the fair’s architectural aspects (read: supercool megatent) for the last three years. Frieze has previously employed Caruso St John (2008-2010), Jamie Fobert (2006–2007) and David Adjaye (2003-2005).

“The architecture and design of the fair have always been an important part of our identity,” say Frieze founders Amanda Sharp and Matthew Slotover. “This year we were drawn to Universal in particular due to their work on interiors and focus on materials. As some of the best designers working in this area, their lateral thinking has been demonstrated by some of their great furniture and even their design for the Olympic torch. We’re really looking forward to them bringing this sensibility to Frieze.” Among Universal’s recent projects are Google Web Lab at London’s Science Museum, exhibition design for Vitra’s Vitrahaus exhibition, and both the interior and exterior of the London outpost of the Ace Hotel.

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Last Chance: Apply to SVA’s MA in Design Research

Fri, 06/27/2014 - 12:28

It was the great design scholar Ferris Bueller who once said, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” New York’s School of Visual Arts is heeding the need for speed and the importance of looking around with a one-year MA in design research, writing, and criticism. The new graduate program, which launches this fall, is an evolution of D-Crit (the two-year MA program in design criticism that has been sharpening design minds since 2008) streamlined into two semesters and eight months of studying images, objects, and environments, and learning ways to construct multi-format narratives that bring them to life from a faculty that includes Steven Heller, MoMA’s Paola Antonelli, and Murray Moss. “The program’s curriculum charts the cutting edge of design practice and is responsive to exciting developments in the media landscape,” says Alice Twemlow, the program’s founding chair. And there’s still time to apply (Psst: we hear significant scholarships are available): get your application in no later than Monday, and tell ‘em UnBeige sent you.

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Seven Questions for Chester Jenkins, Designer of New Cooper Hewitt Typeface

Thu, 06/26/2014 - 14:10


(Photo: Kirstin McKee)

Come December, the renovated and expanded Cooper Hewitt will welcome back visitors with a bold new look. The tricky task of reimagining the graphic identity of the Smithsonian Design Museum was taken on by Pentagram’s Eddie Opara, who tapped Chester Jenkins to work his typographical magic. Jenkins, co-founder of Brooklyn-based Village, created a custom typeface—Cooper Hewitt—that the museum has released into the digital wild: the bold sans serif can be downloaded free of charge as installable fonts, Web font files, and open-source code. Having taken the recent press preview of the museum as an excuse to follow Jenkins around and ask him his views on the various typefaces that were revealed by the painstaking restoration of the Andrew Carnegie Mansion, we agreed to relent if he would answer just seven more questions. He graciously agreed.

What three words best describe the Cooper Hewitt typeface?
Objective. Accessible. Spirited.

How does Cooper Hewitt differ from your Polaris Condensed?
The width of Cooper Hewitt is based on the Semicondensed version of Polaris, which only exists as beta fonts on the computers at Pentagram and UFOs on my hard drive. When I drew the Cooper Hewitt types, I didn’t recycle the outlines of Polaris, but instead drew everything from scratch, referring to Polaris Semicondensed, not simply tweaking it.

The range of weights is greater in Cooper Hewitt; while a couple of the master weights were based on Polaris, the family of fonts has a different internal structure. A significant stylistic difference is in the hewing to horizontal and vertical stroke endings, as opposed to the angled terminal strokes which are a touchstone of Polaris. Then there are the “plateaus”—or “plateaux” for the linguistic sticklers—within most of the curves in round glyphs. You can’t really see them at anything less than a million points, but they separate the two designs. And the numerals and currency glyphs depart significantly from Polaris.

Village is a type co-op—what is that exactly and who are the members?
Village is a group of a dozen small foundries from around the world. While not technically organized as a co-operative, our model was the first of its kind in the digital era, as far as we are aware. We contact our members to discuss important decisions, such as adding new members to the group. The members sometimes collaborate with each other, and often pass along custom projects where one member is more suited than another. We also avoid stepping on each others’ toes; one member will not publish a design if it’s stylistically close to another member’s design. We distribute the work of our members: A2-Type, Blackletra, Feliciano Type Foundry, Klim, LuxTypo., MCKL, Schwartzco, Type Supply, and Urtd. We publish work through two foundries: Constellation and Incubator.
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Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Infographics (But Were Afraid to Ask)

Thu, 06/26/2014 - 08:37

Ready to respond to requests of “Show me the data!” with more than a sad little bar graph? The Mediabistro mothership is now recruiting would-be data visualizers for an online course in infographics that can “engage an audience in your brand, cause, or mission.” Guided by veteran creative director Sascha Mombartz, whose resume includes stints at The New York Times and Google, students will get up to speed with online tools (we’re looking at you Many Eyes) and develop a robust spec for a data visualization. The infographical fun starts on Tuesday, July 1. Learn more here.

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Chicago Getting Its Own Architecture Biennial

Wed, 06/25/2014 - 12:36

Watch out, Venezia. The Windy City is getting a biennial of its own. Announced this week, the inaugural Chicago Architecture Biennial—billed as the largest international survey of contemporary architecture in North America—is set to open October 1, 2015 in and around the Chicago Cultural Center. The three-month-long event, presented by the City of Chicago and the Graham Foundation, will be funded through private donations (BP has already chipped in $2.5 million).

“Chicago is the birthplace of modernism in architecture and every architect in the world knows our city’s history of innovation in the field through the work of architects such as Louis Sullivan, Frank Lloyd Wright, and Mies van der Rohe,” says Graham Foundation director Sarah Herda, who will serve as artistic director of the Biennial with architect, writer, and curator Joseph Grima. “The Biennial will place Chicago, once again, at the forefront of the architectural imagination.”
(more…)

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Design Jobs: Baltimore Magazine, Bloomberg, Soho Publishing

Tue, 06/24/2014 - 18:30

This week, Baltimore Magazine is hiring a web production designer, while Bloomberg needs a photo editor. Soho Publishing is seeking a senior graphic designer, and Avalere Health is on the hunt for a vice president of creative. Get the scoop on these openings and more below, and find additional just-posted gigs on Mediabistro.

Web Production Designer Baltimore Magazine (Baltimore, MD) Photo Editor Bloomberg (London, UK) Senior Graphic Designer Soho Publishing (New York, NY) Vice President, Creative Avalere Health (Washington, DC) Photo Producer Niche Media Holdings (New York, NY)

Find more great design jobs on the UnBeige job board. Looking to hire? Tap into our network of talented UnBeige pros and post a risk-free job listing. For real-time openings and employment news, follow @MBJobPost.

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

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Watch: Packing Tips from Casey Neistat

Tue, 06/24/2014 - 13:11

Spend quality time with the invigorating YouTube channel of Casey Neistat and you’ll find yourself yearning for an advernturesome escape from the screen: isn’t it about time you grabbed your passport and hopped on a plane, and then a skateboard, bicycle, motorcycle, and surfboard, or at least climbed behind the wheel of a Jeep after a monster downpour? The intrepid filmmaker has followed up his J. Crew-sponsored guide to stylish travel with a characteristically DIY approach to luggage for himself and his neon pink penny skateboard.

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Gehry-Designed Fondation Louis Vuitton Set for October Opening

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 18:05


(Photo: Iwan Baan)

Once upon a time, LVMH honcho Bernard Arnault announced his grand plan for a Frank Gehry-designed home for the Fondation Louis Vuitton: it would hover over a 2.5-acre swath of Paris’s Bois de Boulogne like a contemporary art-filled cloud of glass, it would cost around $127 million, it would be open by…2010. No word on the final budget, but opening day is finally in sight: October 27, 2014 will mark the public debut of the 12,600-square-foot building, according to a statement released today by LVMH.

Gehry looked to the lightness of late 19th-century glass and garden architecture in designing the structure, which is perched like an articulated nimbostratus in the leafy Jardin d’Acclimatation. Comprised of a dozen glass “sails,” it is covered in 3,600 panes of glass. The eleven galleries it contains will be dedicated to the permanent collection, temporary exhibitions, and artists’ commissions. Among the opening exhibitions will be one showcasing Gehry’s architectural project for the foundation and timed to coincide with the architect’s first European retrospective, which goes on view in October at the Centre Pompidou.

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MediabistroEDU Summer Sale- $75 OFF Courses

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 16:58

MediabistroEDU wants this to be your best summer yet. That’s why we’re offering $75 OFF all courses and boot camps with code SUN75. Before you head to the beach, set your goals for the summer and register for one of our courses to guarantee you meet them!

Put down your chick lit novel and write your own, expand your knowledge and learn the best social media practices, or rework your digital content strategy to optimize your brand’s audience online!  Whatever your goal is, our courses are guaranteed to make Summer 2014 your most productive one yet with our expert instructors, career driven topics, and thorough curriculums.

So make the most of your summer and register for any of our online coursesin-person courses, or online boot camps today!

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Quote of Note | Alice Rawsthorn

Sat, 06/21/2014 - 12:25

“There are toxic words in every field and, when it comes to design, two of the most ominous are ‘sculptural’ and ‘artistic’. Not that there is necessarily anything wrong with design projects exhibiting either quality, but those that are described as doing so seldom do. Instead, they are very likely to be any or all of the following: bland, silly, blingy, pretentious, shoddy, derivative, ugly, ridiculous, or unjustifiably expensive. Check out the dodgier booths at a ‘design-art’ fair to see what I mean.”

-Alice Rawsthorn writing on the difference between art and design in the latest issue of Frieze

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‘Detroit—Bruce Weber’ Exhibition Debuts at Detroit Institute of Arts

Fri, 06/20/2014 - 14:32

The Detroit Institute of Arts has been busy lining up pledges—$26 million from Chrysler, Ford, General Motors, and General Motors Foundation; $10 million from the Mellon Foundation; $3 million from the J. Paul Getty Trust—toward its goal to raise $100 million as part of a “grand bargain” that will help the City of Detroit emerge from bankruptcy, support city pensioners, and protect the museum’s art collection for the public. An exhibition that opens today should bolster hometown pride. The DIA has partnered with Condé Nast to present “Detroit—Bruce Weber,” an exhibition of approximately 80 photographs by the celebrated fashion photographer, filmmaker, and golden retriever enthusiast. Weber began photographing the city and its citizens in 2006, and the images range from portraits of famous locals such as Aretha Franklin and Patti Smith to legendary locales such as Belle Isle, where he came upon a wedding and captured a poignant image of the flower girl. “Detroit—Bruce Weber” is on view through Sept 7 at the DIA.

Pictured: Christopher Gardner, Artist, and Von Jour Reece, Fashion Designer, at Bert’s Marketplace, Detroit, Michigan, 2006, gelatin silver print. © Bruce Weber

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Björk (and Her App) Bound for MoMA: Retrospective Planned for Spring 2015

Thu, 06/19/2014 - 13:46

The Museum of Modern Art has expanded from video games to apps. Pioneering this new collecting category for MoMA is Björk’s Biophilia, the 2011 app-cum-album—with interactive graphics, animations, and musical scoring—designed in 2011 in collaboration with the likes of Mathias Augustyniak and Michael Amzalag of M/M Paris. We hear that gentlemen of M/M will get the retrospective treatment at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris in 2016, but Björk will beat them to the multidisciplinary punch: the work of the Icelandic composer, musician, and artist will be the subject of a full-scale retrospective slated to open March 7, 2015 at MoMA, the museum announced this week.

Chief curator at large Klaus Biesenbach is drawing upon more than two decades of Björkian endeavors, including her seven full-length albums, to chronicle her career through sound, film, visuals, instruments, objects, costumes, and performance. As for the installation, which will not travel beyond MoMA, expect “a narrative, both biographical and imaginatively fictitious, cowritten by Björk and the acclaimed Icelandic writer Sjón Sigurdsson” as well as a “newly commissioned, immersive music and film experience” conceived and realized with director Andrew Huang and Autodesk.”

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SEN One Creates Cover for Time Out New York

Wed, 06/18/2014 - 21:15

You’ve still got more than two months to catch the Museum of the City of New York’s “City as Canvas” exhibition of graffiti from the Martin Wong collection. For a bite-sized dose, pick up a copy of the latest issue of Time Out New York, on newsstands today, which features an original cover by George “SEN One” Morillo. The graffiti artist, a lifelong Upper West Sider, was an ideal fit for TONY‘s uptown-themed issue. “Being born and raised uptown, and seeing the gentrification process all my life and seeing everybody coming up, it fits who I am,” he tells the magazine. “That story connects to my story.”

As for how that story connects with the street art of today, Morillo points to the humble origins of slick tools with names like Krink and Grog. “We made markers by popping the balls out of roll-on deodorant, putting in the soft stuff from school erasers, and filling the containers with ink. Those techniques, as primitive as they might seem, led to the markers they sell now,” he says. “Vandals created an industry, and it all comes out of the Upper West Side.”

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Cooper Hewitt Unveils New Name, Identity, Typeface in Advance of December Reopening

Tue, 06/17/2014 - 18:54
The countdown to the revamped and revitalized version of the Smithsonian's Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum begins now. At a press conference held this morning, director Caroline Baumann detailed plans for the reopening, set for December 12th, along with a wave of changes that debut today on the museum's new website, a WordPress-powered affair created in collaboration with Pentagram and Matcha Labs. The first thing to notice is the 117-year-old institution's new name—Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum—which dispenses with the hyphen and the "national" of old. There's a bold new Eddie Opara-designed identity to match, with an eminently scalable wordmark that forms a perfect rectangle. "Cooper Hewitt's new identity is straightforward with no play on visual or theoretical complexity, no puzzling contradiction or ambiguity, no distracting authorship," says Opara [cut to the Whitney's neurasthenic W, cowering in the corner of a billboard]. "Function is its primary goal." As for that non-nonsense sans serif, it's the work of Chester Jenkins of Brooklyn-based Village. It's available as a free download here. continued...

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Design Jobs: Soho Publishing, AL DIA News Media, Lakeshore Learning Materials

Tue, 06/17/2014 - 18:30
This week, Soho Publishing is hiring a senior graphic designer, while AL D͍A News Media needs a digital editor. Lakeshore Learning Material is seeking a creative director of catalog and print marketing, and Time Out New York is on the hunt for a designer. Get the scoop on these openings and more below, and find additional just-posted gigs on Mediabistro. Senior Graphic Designer Soho Publishing (New York, NY) Digital Editor AL D͍A News Media (Philadelphia, PA) Creative Director, Catalog and Print Marketing Lakeshore Learning Materials (Carson, CA) Designer Time Out New York (New York, NY) Senior Graphic Designer Kaspersky Lab (Woburn, MA) Find more great design jobs on the UnBeige job board. Looking to hire? Tap into our network of talented UnBeige pros and post a risk-free job listing. For real-time openings and employment news, follow @MBJobPost.

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

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A Forest Grows at Ground Zero

Mon, 06/16/2014 - 13:32
The 9/11 Memorial in Lower Manhattan is a living memorial in more ways the one. Approximately 400 swamp white oak trees were transplanted from the New Jersey countryside to the Memorial Park, which also happens to be one of the largest and most complex "green roofs" in the world—planted atop a seven-story, below-ground museum. Brooklyn-based filmmaker Scott Elliott seeks to explore this confluence of remembrance, monumentality, and landscape architecture in a feature-length documentary, The Trees, and he's looking to Kickstarter to help cover post-production costs in time to get the film on next year's festival circuit. Learn more about his project in the below pre-trailer of sorts.

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