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The Five Vignelli-isms



On the evening of Tuesday, March 8, The Architectural League gave its President’s Medal to Lella and Massimo Vignelli. The award (past recipients of which include John D. Rockefeller, Jr., Hugh Ferriss, Joseph Urban, Richard Meier, Robert A.M. Stern, and Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown) was given to the Vignellis “in recognition of a body of work so influential in its breadth that it has shaped the very way we see the world.”

Pentagram’s Michael Bierut, an Architectural League vice president who began his career over 30 years ago as a junior designer at Vignelli Associates, designed the the program we see here. The five different covers featured a quote from Vignelli printed in PMS Super Warm Red and set in Helvetica of course.

So why are these five Vignelli-isms important?

When I first came across this I immediately saw five lessons to live by rather than just five miscellaneous quotes. They appear self explanatory but read each and give it a moment alone in your mind:

One life is too short for doing everything.

We like design to be visually powerful, intellectually elegant,
and above all timeless.

If you can design one thing, you can design everything.

If you do it right, it will last forever.

The life of a designer is a life of fight against the ugliness.

Posted via Wanken

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The Graphic Design of Urgency

Posted by Scott






Recto|Verso has a great piece up entitled Radical Newspapers and ‘The Graphic Design of Urgency’. F.A. Bernett Books (who’s staff runs the Recto|Verso blog) came into possession a collection of 184 issues of Mid-century leftist literature spanning seven decades and have posted some choice specimens. The collection is apparently for sale; any interested parties can get in touch at the site.

Recto|Verso

72 Olympics Passes

Posted by Scott








Shelby’s Blog is running A Week of the 1972 Munich Olympic Games feature and the second installment is pretty epic. This collection of ticket passes from the ’72 games were designed by the legendary Otl Aicher and feature the classic pictograms for which the Munich games are known.

I’m not sure why, but tickets of all kinds have always piqued my interest and this set may be the best I’ve ever laid eyes on. But forget the tickets, would just love some high-res copies of these photos for framing.

Wanken – A Week of the 1972 Munich Olympic Games

Indic & Indian Scripts

Posted by Scott











Flickr Pools can be a great resource for delving deeper into a visual theme or style and the Indic & Indian Scripts Pool is no exception. At least here in the US, the Latin Alphabet is pretty the only game in town when it comes to design so it’s easy to forget that their are whole other character sets out there. And while I’ve never encountered a project that called for any of these, it’s definitely inspiring to see such fluid characters and layouts.

From the Pool description:

“Indic scripts are Brahmi-derived scripts, This includes scripts used outside India, like Tibetan, Sinhala, Thai, Khmer, Burmese. Is this group for Indic scripts, or is it just for scripts used in India? If it’s the latter, then Arabic would count but Sinhala wouldn’t.”

Indic & Indian Scripts Pool

The Importance of Artifact

Posted by Scott




While digging around for more info on the “found” work of Vivian Meier, I stumbled onto Todd Bieber’s video detailing his discovery of a roll of film in Prospect Park. He shows some of the (well shot) photography and wonders if he’ll ever find the people who took them. While this is an interesting story, I didn’t find it all that poignant until I read Peter Kirn’s take on Create Digital Motion.

Indeed, we are losing touch more and more with physical media. Perhaps this is a good thing for many reasons, but as a musician I struggle with the most meaningful way to release my work. I grew up focusing on the media as a sort of physical manifestation of the art that it contained. Perhaps it was just my childhood fascination with all things printed and ephemeral, but I do feel a definite disconnect now between myself and my –all digital– music collection. I personally like the idea of a physical object to represents an otherwise unsee-able art form.

I realize that we are marching inexorably towards a physical media-free future (and for most of us, we’re already there), but I’d love to see more ideas like IDEO’s C60 Redux concept; an RFID music system that plays on the strengths of physical and digital media. A system like this might not always be as practical as purely digital music, but I for one would love to experience music at home this way.

More at Create Digital Motion, NPR, TechGear

Kyle Tezak

Posted by Alex





Kyle Tezak designed these icon collections to represent select films. Each film appears to get four icons, two colors, and a unique type treatment. You can see some of his work in-progress for this project on his Dribbble page.

I’m aware there are countless other projects that reduce films down to a few graphic elements. I particularly enjoyed this one because the elements are icons, not just squares and circles (albeit cleverly chosen ones). I find icon design trickier than poster design, and I am impressed with Kyle’s clear adeptness at the former.

Paul Gardner Band Posters

Posted by Jakub





I’ve been admiring Paul Gardner’s band posters this morning, great use of color and execution of ideas that aren’t too literal or same-y, you know like owls and hand drawn guitars, urgh I hope to see more posters like this around Brooklyn. I noticed one in there though that is a bit ISO50 Terrabyte-ish but i’ll pretend I didn’t see it.