When some things become to much, we turn to other things for relief. And that’s why Things is here – to alleviate any leftover hummidy drummidy of your long workin’ week. Yup, it’s Saturday morning and time for your regular dose of wonderful things that remind you of all the fun that’s being had in the world. Our mail gets better every week and once again it was a tough draw – but we’re confident that the line-up we’ve got is more than enough to slake your appetite for all things innovative, original and lovely.
Earth Quarterly Issue 1: Winter Solstice
The earth. It’s a pretty important place for us. In between thinking about art and design and film and music and what we might be having for lunch, we like to set aside a little time to think about the earth and what a special place it is. Well the people at Earth Quarterly seem to set aside almost all their time to think about it – a righteous effort, considering at the end of their globe-centric brainstorms they produce something as lovely as this. Earth Quarterly tell stories, take photos and conducts interviews to “shed light on the people doing the good work out there” – those people being artists, activist, poets and even “mystics.”
VNA (Very Nearly Almost): Issue 17
VNA has been documenting street art and graffiti since 2006 and this, their 17th issue, has left us assured that this is still one of the coolest art forms around. Crammed full of people you’ve never heard of doing work that will blow your mind, this is exactly the kind of publication that opens the doors for artist and audience to connect. Issue 17’s main feature is The London Police, an Amsterdam-based British duo who posses that kind of accidental appeal that makes greasy hair and grubby sweatshirts look enviable. Rock on VNA! We’ll be reading you again!
Punctuation…? // Life // The journey of larks User Design
This trilogy from graphic design studio User Design is a real treat for anyone who likes their information with a side of quirky. The journey of larks sees visual gags rendered in various forms – from concrete poetry to pen drawings, while Life is “a day in the life of somebody” told entirely without text. And the nit-picky among us thoroughly enjoyed Punctuation…? which combines illustration and instruction in a manual that should probably be put into the hands of schoolchildren everywhere (and probably a few grown ups too).
Seventy-nine Short Essays on Design Michael Bierut
For the first time in paperback, this cerulean volume dropped through our letterbox with an audible plunk. But it’s the depth of content which lends this book its true weight. Bierut calls himself “a designer, not a writer” by profession, but this book was born out of Design Observer, a blog he began writing with fellow designers Rick Pynor, Bill Drenttel, and Jessica Helfand. Here he presents just shy of 80 concise vignettes, sometimes autobiographical, sometimes instructive, all presenting the world of design from a clear and accessible viewpoint. Great stuff.
2012 Calendar Research Studios
We were just starting to think that we’d finished opening all the exciting new 2012 calenders (and were sighing little sighs of disappointment) when WHAM – in comes this bad boy! Islington-based Research Studios have produced a font-rich, colour-saturated datebook that they call “our annual celebration of typography and our playground for experimentation in design”. Well they’re right chuck “celebration” and “playground” into the same sentence – this thing is nothing if not fun.
- Camelot’s typefaces bring both the contemporary and historical to the table
- Scott Newett’s eerily quiet, ethereal portraits of Chinese utopia
- Jade Schulz’s atmospheric and imaginative editorial illustrations
- Emiliano Granado’s new zine puts a fresh spin on Tour de France fandom
- The big cover up: Mathieu Tremblin's translations of graffiti
- Artist Howard Fonda captures the vibrancy of summer for Ace & Tate
- Benedict Redgrove’s beautifully hypnotic film about how a tennis ball is created
- Tommy Cash subverts the tropes of rap videos with a fleshy celebration of the human body (NSFW)
- Ian Davis’ picturesque paintings of bureaucratic dystopia
- Is it ever OK to work for free?
- Pentagram unveils refresh of Mastercard’s brand mark and identity
- Peter Saville and Tate Design Studio create beer can artwork for Switch House pale ale