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Archives: December 2007

UnBeige Looks Back: See You In the Future, Mr. Powers!

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Maybe because it’s so fresh in our mind, but non-designer Michael Wolff‘s Dr. Evil impression sure does stick out as our favorite design memory of the year (Wolff photo courtesy of Jessica Perilla). Not this time, Mr. Glaser!

Here’s to many more non-banal moments in 2008. You can see our ten favorite 2007 stories here.

Have an extra-bubbly New Year’s Day for us.

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UnBeige Looks Back: The Year In How Cool It Was To Be Chip Kidd

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Who did the baddest book cover design of them all? He did.

Who won a National Design Award and then DJed the afterparty? He did.

Who got his house profiled in international publication after international publication? He did.

Who got his first novel optioned then put together a very thick monograph then cranked out another novel to be released in the near future? He did.

Who fronted a band on the side? (And they’re good!) He did, he did.

And he does.

He’s our courageous creative, our multitasking man, our Artbreak hero, our UnBeige crush of the new year, Chip Kidd. Yes, Chip, you’re a legitimate Rock Star in our hearts now.

UnBeige is counting down our biggest stories of 2007, all day, right here.

UnBeige Looks Back: The Year In Name Badges

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Now that we’ve found ourselves appropriately post-holiday jetsettled (the irony of that made-up word just kills us), we’re not terribly sure what to do with ourselves without some kind of a design event to attend. In fact, we’re not really sure where we are at the moment. Thank goodness we have these name badges for reference because we’re having a hard time remembering where in fact we went. Let’s see…

We got schooled at Schools of Thoughts.
We sipped Shiner Bock at SXSW.
We found answers at the Y Conference.
We got down with Dwell on Design.
We saw what was NEXT with AIGA.
We grooved at the National Design Awards.
We razzled Art Basel and dazzled Design Miami.
And we cried (in a good way) at Cause/Effect.

UnBeige is counting down our biggest stories of 2007, all day, right here.

UnBeige Looks Back: The Year In Design Videos

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No, we’re not talking about Gary Hustwit‘s masterpiece, we’re talking about every single YouTube video that tried to take design somewhere it simply did not want to go.

Can someone tell the makers of Comic Sans that last year was the year of typeface parodies? Or maybe let Electrolux know that they can’t rap? We do not, we repeat, do not, want to make our logos bigger (available in hard rock or cream form). And we hope, for their sakes, that both the Graphic Design Avenger and the Original Design Gangsta have been placed in witness protection programs.

We’d show you our favorite design videos of the year, but all the Bill Cahan mashups we posted have since been taken down.

UnBeige is counting down our biggest stories of 2007, all day, right here.

UnBeige Looks Back: The Year In Seizures, Fake Bombs, Leaks, Ugliness and Such As

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Who knew design had such a dark side? Some of our 2007 news was downright scary.

Design was dangerous. An innocent English logo was found to have serious medical side effects. Another made New Yorkers queasy. Guerilla marketing for a cartoon and a student art project were declared national threats. A building attempted to trap people inside with dripping water and/or shards of ice placed strategically around the exits.

Design was controversial. It made people happy, angry, addicted, and fat. It turned Tom Wolfe and a small town in upstate New York against us.

And worst of all, the most inarticulate person in the history of the internet was reported to be a graphic designer.

UnBeige is counting down our biggest stories of 2007, all day, right here.

UnBeige Looks Back: The Year In Realizing, Damn, Design Increases Longevity

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Sure, every industry probably has their share of centenarians. But what is it about design that keeps our ranks forever young? Not only do they keep living, they keep working! Eva Zeisel, still out there signing books, edged past 101 in November, and Oscar Niemeyer hit the big one-zero-zero this month in the midst of ongoing projects.

Which makes Julius Shulman a teenager at 97.

UnBeige is counting down our biggest stories of 2007, all day, right here.

Whistle in the New Year Tonight at Pratt

We interrupt our year-in-review countdown to suggest a way for our New York-based readers to best welcome 2008…

Who needs wild parties, Ryan Seacrest, or a fancy new LED-laden slab of Waterford crystal descending upon you and the millions of goofy-hatted, inebriated Times Square revelers? Not you, UnBeige reader. All you need is a bottle of champagne (may we suggest the Veuve Clicquot Rose, complete with Karim Rashid-designed loveseat?) and a seat on the G Train. Your destination is the Brooklyn campus of Pratt Institute, where the art school’s antique steam whistles will ring in the new year (or are they belching out the old one?) tonight at midnight. Get there early and tour the school’s power plant! Who knew steam engine-powered DC generators could be so festive?

Here’s a look at last year’s steamy celebration:

UnBeige Looks Back: The Year In Chowder

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Tracking the comings and goings of Brian Collins could fill an entire blog with posts that sound more like the frenetic tour schedule of the Blue Man Group (BEIJING! NEW YORK! BIRMINGHAM! DENVER! MARTHA’S VINEYARD! ONE NIGHT ONLY!). First he bailed on his gig at BIG for a limited engagement dishing up clam chowder at a Cape Cod seafood shack and a stint helping the kids in China. Then he was back in action with the only design firm we know named after a cocktail: COLLINS.

Okay, so there were a few minor details in need of clarification, but we’ll leave those to our sister blog. Collins remains number one in our hearts for one simple reason: He works for Al Gore.

UnBeige is counting down our biggest stories of 2007, all day, right here.

UnBeige Looks Back: The Year In Those People Who Aren’t Men

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We closed last year out with the bonus question asked at the now-famous panel on book design at the 92nd Street Y: What about that glass “cieling” in design?

This year it seems we were able to discuss the issue in a much more civil manner. Nicolai Ouroussoff had his theories about why it’s not happening for female architects, Zeldman covered women in the web design world, yet, on the other hand, we wondered why the entire craft industry seems to be populated exclusively by ladies.

Then all of a sudden–and completely by accident, they insist–mediabistro.com put together a panel on the future of design that featured five speakers, all women. Was it really that hard, then?

UnBeige is counting down our biggest stories of 2007, all day, right here.

UnBeige Looks Back: The Year In Nussbaum

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Just when we thought it couldn’t get any better than the 2006 Nussbaum-Bierut battle royale over INside Innovation‘s spec-ish design (wait, are they still making that thing?), America’s Favorite Blogger Bruce Nussbaum gave us a year’s worth of entertainment.

In March he came forward with an eloquent love letter to the design industry, “DESIGNERS SUCK,” which earned him eternal admiration from design professionals everywhere. But that wasn’t enough for Nussbaum. He went on to win over the New York judicial system, violent lesbians everywhere, and all legitimate gang members currently operating on Eighth Avenue between Avenues C and D.

But as even as the King of Blubber himself acknowledges, he still can’t spell.

UnBeige is counting down our biggest stories of 2007, all day, right here.

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