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Archives: May 2014

Quote of Note | Annie Leibovitz

chaplin“My background as a photographer is as an observer. I’m a terrible director. The performers I have the most rapport with are comedians, who make up a very special group. They’re sort of like manic depressives. I sympathize with them. They are usually also very intelligent. For me, the classic photograph of a comedian is Charlie Chaplin just leaning. That is such an extraordinarily funny picture. It’s as perfect a photograph as you could ever have of a comedian. Chaplin came from silent films. The challenge for a photographer is to create a visually funny picture without it being stupid. It’s difficult to take a funny picture.”

-Annie Leibovitz, whose images—from the black-and-white photograph of Richard Nixon’s helicopter lifting off from the White House lawn after he resigned as president in 1974 to the formal color portrait of Queen Elizabeth II taken in a drawing room of Buckingham Palace in 2007—are collected in a new SUMO-sized, limited-edition book from Taschen

Mediabistro Course

Mediabistro Job Fair

Mediabistro Job FairLand your next big gig! Join us on Janaury 27  at the Altman Building in New York City for an incredible opportunity to meet with hiring managers from the top New York media compaies, network with other professionals and industry leaders, and land your next job. Register now!

Paul Giamatti as an Insane Museum Curator? Make It Happen!

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Picture it: A Fellini- and Buñuel-flavored tale of a museum curator grappling with dwindling visitor numbers, harsh economic realities, his crumbling sanity, and…a giant sloth! We were sold on the premise of graphic novelist Paul Hornschemeier‘s planned animated short film even before learning that the crazy curator, one Gordon Boonewell, will be voiced by Paul Giamatti. Saturday Night Live‘s dazzling Kate McKinnon has also signed on to the project, entitled Giant Sloth, which Hornschemeier is looking to fund through a freshly launched Kickstarter campaign.

“Uncompromised by the studio process, Giant Sloth combines the psychologically rich world of literary graphic novels with the all the possibilities of motion and sound that animation allows,” notes Hornschemeier. “It treats its characters not as clowns shuffling for an easy laugh, but as people. And as giant sloths. Giant sloths are people too.”
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Cooper-Hewitt Appoints Brooke Hodge as Deputy Director

hodgeCurator, writer, and critic Brooke Hodge will join the Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum as deputy director, a post that has been vacant since Caroline Baumann stepped up from that role in 2012 to serve as acting director following the death of Bill Moggridge. Baumann was named director of the museum last June. Hodge, who been director of exhibitions and publications at the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles since 2010, will begin her new position on July 16 as the Cooper-Hewitt continues the countdown to its reopening after an epic renovation that will expand exhibition space by more than 60%. “I’ve known and admired Brooke since her involvement [as a guest curator] with the 2006 Triennial at Cooper-Hewitt, and I’m thrilled she is joining us at this critical juncture,” said Baumann in a statement released today. “Brooke will be diving into preparations for our opening later this fall, while partnering with me and museum teams on the exciting, future plans for the nation’s design museum.”

Seven Questions for Jessica Hische

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“The basis of any word is a single letter,” says self-described “letterer, illustrator, and crazy cat lady” Jessica Hische, known for performing stunningly beautiful typographical feats for the likes of Wes Anderson, Penguin Books, The New York Times, and—be still our justice-loving hearts—John Hodgman. Among her latest projects is a stationery collection for the Luxe Project, a Moo initiative that pairs top creative talent with Moo’s deluxe business cards, letterheads, and notecards, and then gives 100% of net proceeds to the designer’s charity of choice (Hische’s feline-friendly pick: the ASPCA). She made time in her busy, bicoastal—San Francisco and Brooklyn—schedule to answer our questions about the luxe letterforms adapted from her Daily Drop Cap project, her book jacket for The Circle by Dave Eggers, and more.

For those not familiar with Daily Drop Cap, what is it and how did it come about?
I started Daily Drop Cap because, when I left working at Louise Fili Ltd., I wanted an excuse to draw letterforms every day, even when I wasn’t being paid to by clients. I wanted a way to experiment and develop my lettering skills since I was about to step out on my own, away from the daily mentoring of Louise. Originally, I had planned on doing an alphabet a week instead of a letter a day, but decided quickly that I wasn’t up for a challenge that enormous at the time. I gave myself the goal of twelve alphabets, a number that seemed daunting but doable, and for a year and a half I drew a letter every single day. It ended up becoming the thing that really kicked my career into full swing and made people pay attention to the work I was doing.

JL moo luxeWhat did you create for the Luxe Project?
My collection for Moo uses a selection of my Daily Drop Caps, transforming the original artwork into sophisticated monograms by switching the complex original color palettes to two-color. I chose letters that I thought would appeal to many people—sometimes the letters I created for Daily Drop Cap specifically referenced something I was doing that day and wouldn’t work as stationery monograms— and tried to pick gender neutral letterforms when possible. The letters are integrated into simple but beautiful designs which could work for anyone, be they a designer or just a lover of letters. I used the typeface Router—which I love—made by a type design friend Jeremy Mickel.

What led you to select the ASPCA to receive all net proceeds?
I adopted my two cats from the ASPCA in New York and just love what they do to put misplaced animals in good homes. I’m a huge animal lover—it’s embarrassing how much I dote on my two cats—and love supporting an organization that obviously cares so deeply about animals.
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Design Jobs: Smashbox Studios, MIT Technology Review, Washingtonian Magazine

This week, Smashbox Studios is hiring a bookings director, while MIT Technology Review is seeking a deputy art director. Washingtonian Magazine needs an art director, and Madavor Media is on the hunt for a graphic designer. Get the scoop on these openings and more below, and find additional just-posted gigs on Mediabistro.

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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.

Derk Reilink Redesigns Tape Dispenser with ‘ClickTape’

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ClickTape_Derk_ReilinkUnwilling to cede precious desktop real estate to a bulky, weighted tape dispenser nor to look upon the unsightly clear plastic one that accompanies a roll, we’ve long relegated tape to the drawer, where it spends its days in the company of foreign coins, our second-favorite scissors, and a thicket of novelty USB flash drives. Derk Reilink knew there had to be a better way.

The Dutch designer took on the challenge of building a better tape dispenser as part of his graduate studies in industrial design and engineering at the University of Twente in Enschede, Netherlands. “I started to experiment with basic shapes and found the shape of the tape itself to be the best shape for the dispenser,” Reilink tells us. “By taking out a section of the ring shape I could create a symmetric chain-linked design.” The result is ClickTape, a minimalist dispenser that is useful and portable—think of it as the practical, low-key sibling of the bottle for Bulgari’s Omnia fragrance.
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Quote of Note | Elizabeth Diller

White iphone 4s using siri“Whenever I ask Siri for directions or a recommendation, I also ask her a trick question. Her answers are usually wacky. She scolds me for cursing, which I love, but she has no problem with ethics. If I say, ‘Remind me to rob a bank at 3 p.m.,’ she responds, ‘Here’s your reminder for today at 3 p.m.: Rob a bank. Shall I create it?’ She takes orders without imposing judgments, unlike some of my staff.”

-Architect Elizabeth Diller, partner at Diller Scofidio + Renfro, in the Wall Street Journal

Wanted: Graphic Designer Who Can Perform

The world’s leading performing arts center—that would be Lincoln Center— recently celebrated its 50th anniversary [cymbal flourish]. Some say that such a milestone calls for a gift of gold, but it’s actually a graphics maestro. That’s right, design fans, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, one of 12 organizations resident in the Lincoln Center complex (how many of the other 11 can you name?), is on the hunt for a graphic designer to “develop and create communications and advertising which promote Lincoln Center’s programmatic offerings and services and express the Lincoln Center brand.” Bring your portfolio of dazzling typography, design, and branding work but leave your stage fright at home.

Learn more about and apply for this graphic designer, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts job or view all of the current mediabistro.com design/art/photo jobs.

Photographer Michael Schmidt Wins Prix Pictet

(Michael Schmidt)Berlin-based photographer Michael Schmidt is the winner of the third Prix Pictet. Sponsored by Swiss bank Pictet & Cie and with a purse of 100,000 Swiss francs (approximately $112,000, at current exchange), the entry-by-nomination international photography competition seeks to promote sustainability. This year’s theme was “Consumption.” Schmidt’s monumental “Lebensmittel” (food stuff) project, made between 2006 and 2010, was chosen by a jury that included Whitney curator Elisabeth Sussman and photographer Luc Delahaye, who won the Prix Pictet in 2012.

“There were many potential winners but, after much debate, we finally agreed to award the Prix Pictet to Michael Schmidt whose ‘Lebensmittel‘ is an epic and hugely topical investigation into the ways in which we feed ourselves,” said jury chair Sir David King yesterday evening at London’s Victoria and Albert Museum, where Kofi Annan was on hand to announce the winner. Schmidt, 68, was not present due to severe illness. The twelve photographers shortlisted for the Prix Pictet included Rineke Dijkstra, Boris Mikhailov, Allan Sekula (who passed away last August at the age of 62), and Laurie Simmons. An exhibition of work shortlisted for Prix Pictet is on view through June 14 at the V&A.

Inspiring IBM Design Lives On in Tumblr Form

paul rand rebusIn the course of working on projects for IBM, art director Sue Murphy was forever discovering graphic design gold in the company’s deep archives. “Because of the nature of the Internet, not a lot of this is available easily online,” notes Murphy, an art director at Oglivy & Mather in New York. “Or God forbid–hi res!” She is changing that with Good Design Is Good Business, a Tumblr that takes its name from a 1973 speech by Thomas Watson, Jr., IBM’s second president. The online collection of posters, by the likes of Ogilvy, Paul Rand, and Carl De Torres, is sure to make you THINK.

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