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Posts Tagged ‘Maira Kalman’

Ray Eames, Maira Kalman, John Maeda Among ADC Hall of Fame Inductees

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When it comes to its Hall of Fame, the Art Directors Club (ADC) doesn’t mess around. Next month, seven extraordinary individuals will join a who’s who of significant contributors to art direction and visual communications that includes everyone from Walt Disney and Raymond Loewy to Steve Heller and Issey Miyake (if only we could get that latter duo together, just think of the resulting book-cum-pleated garment!). The fantastic seven are:

  • Alex Bogusky, co-chairman, Crispin Porter + Bogusky
  • Ray Eames (posthumous), designer, architect, filmmaker
  • Sir John Hegarty, chairman, worldwide creative director, Bartle Bogle Hegarty
  • Maira Kalman, illustrator, artist, designer
  • John Maeda, president, Rhode Island School of Design
  • R. Roger Remington, Massimo and Leila Vignelli Distinguished Professor of Design, Rochester Institute of Technology
  • Bruce Weber, fashion photographer

    Interestingly, the November 6 induction ceremony will add to the ADC Hall of Fame both a second Eames (Charles joined in 1984) and a second Kalman (Tibor was inducted in 2004). Meanwhile, mark your calendars for the ADC’s “Fame Festival” series of events, including what promise to be lively conversations with Bogusky and Hegarty (November 5) and with Kalman and Maeda (November 11).

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    Kalman and Pearlman Get MAD Tonight

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    Now, you realize if you go to this tonight instead of coming to see us, we’ll probably never talk to you again. But if you have that all straightened out in your head, then go on, go see Maira Kalman and Chee Pearlman in conversation at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York. Kalman, an UnBeige fave, and Pearlman, another UnBeige fave, will be chatting about Kalman’s embroidery work as featured in the exhibition “Pricked: Extreme Embroidery.” Of course she’ll also be talking about her new book/opera The Principles of Uncertainty. And maybe she’ll even talk about mocha cream cakes.

    If you can’t make it tonight (or if you’re a die-hard UnBeige loyalist–thank you), “Pricked” runs until March 9, and we must recommend this fabulous show with a long list of artists from 17 countries and some of the zaniest, most gorgeous needle-work you’ve ever seen.

    Making a Case for Digital Comics

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    Geoff Boucher at the LAT (getting better all the time, by the way) reminisces about the olden days of comics as he critiques Marvel’s new Digital Comics, where they’ve taken the classics and turned them into a clickable web-based slide shows. “The Amazing Spider-Man,” “The Avengers” and “The Fantastic Four” are all there, decades-old and looking as good as new. There are even some web-bonuses, like narratives of the story arcs by writers. But as we quickly learn, the motives are not to preserve the comics for an aging fan base, but to cultivate a new one:

    The glut of slick magazines and the quirky business history of comics distribution has made it hard for kids to stumble on a comic book if they aren’t looking for one. “We don’t have a natural lifestyle intersection point for kids anymore,” says Dan Buckley, president of publishing for Marvel Entertainment. “We think we can find one online.” In other words, Marvel is banking on the idea that it can catch passing youngsters somewhere near the corner of YouTube and MySpace.

    Sigh. Does it always have to come down YouTube and MySpace?

    Seven Questions for Stefan Bucher

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    Besides being one of the nicest designers on the block, Stefan Bucher has suddenly become one of the most popular. While minding his own business at his firm, 344 Design, Bucher embarked on an experiment called Daily Monster, which not only celebrates its one-year anniversary today, come February, it will also be a book. This month he’s also putting the final touches on the products for the Echo Park Time Travel Mart, the latest 826 retail establishment, which will open December 15. Luckily, he had a few minutes between monsters and time travel to answer our questions…

    1. What’s the first thing(s) you read in the morning?

    I usually go to bed around 3 or 4AM, so technically the first thing I read every morning is the New York Times e-mail digest that tends to roll in around 1AM. I follow that by catching up on Russell Davies and Last Night on ER. Once I actually manage to crawl into bed, I usually read a New Yorker article or two before I turn off the light.

    Once I wake up again, I actually really look forward to going through my stack of e-mails, because there is always something new and fun and exciting in there.

    2. Last movie you saw?

    The last movie I saw was Elizabeth: The Golden Years. I was in Seattle to give a talk the next day, but I had the night off. The night before out-of-town talks is as close as I come to complete relaxation. The files are done, I’m away from the office, nobody expects me to do anything other than show up the next morning. It’s how I used to feel during summer vacation in high school. As beautiful as Seattle is, I just had such a longing to go see a movie, something sprawling and epic that would be so much better on the big screen. So I walked from my hotel to the theater, got myself a hotdog, a pretzel, and some M&Ms and let it all wash over me. It’s a fun movie, too—both gorgeous to look at and satisfyingly soapy. That was one of the nicest nights I’ve had in a while. Thank you, Shekhar Kapur.

    3. Best/most memorable design/designer-related encounter?

    Earlier this year I had the great honor of designing the catalog for David Hockney‘s new show of paintings “The East Yorkshire Landscape.” In the process I got to present the design to Mr. Hockney at his Los Angeles home. I’ve been a huge fan of his work for years, as well as of his writing. I was trying to figure out how to steer the conversation towards his book Secret Knowledge about the use of optics in Renaissance painting without coming off as a Trekkie (which I also kind of am, but that’s beside the point.) As it turned out, I didn’t have to do anything. Within minutes he started telling me about his latest findings.

    It’s rare that you get to meet one of your heroes and have them exceed your expectations. It’s even better when you get to meet them not as a fan, but as part of your work.

    Along those same lines, I visited Stefan Sagmeister‘s studio in the spring of 1999 and he was such a kind and gracious host. He must’ve spent an hour talking with me, when I had nothing more to offer than wide-eyed enthusiasm. His kindness has always stuck with me. On that visit I also met his then apprentice Hjalti Karlsson, which led to a long friendship with both Jan Wilker and Hjalti, which led to my first book [All Access: The Making of Thirty Extraordinary Graphic Designers] which led to… everything else.

    Read more

    The Quotable Maira Kalman

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    So funny, so witty, is that Ms. Maira Kalman. In case you might not have noticed, she likes to change what she does a lot, even within one piece of work, just so she doesn’t get bored. After a brief background of her Elements of Style book, she walks us, blissfully, through her book The Principles of Uncertainty, which was originally a blog for TimesSelect (on seeing her work online: “If only every book could come backlit”). And, like Style, Principles is also being made into an opera, which opens next week (and may involve contratenors, boots and goats) Our four favorite things she said:

    “I’m admitting I’m manic depressive on stage, which I’m assuming anyone who does anything is.”

    “How horrible is February, right?”

    “There was zero peace in my childhood home, but the cake was mocha cream cake.”

    “I want to be a maid for the Dutchess of Devonshire and handle her chicken eggs.”

    Isn’t she precious?

    All AIGA NEXT coverage here.

    Free Maira!

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    When the TimesSelect wall came tumbling, crumbling down last week, reminiscent of a certain day in Europe back in ’89, it didn’t occur to us to pilfer our share of the riches horded by the moneyed elite and denied to the nonsubscribing huddled masses for so very long.

    For one, we now have a full-access backstage pass to Maira Kalman‘s illustrated blog The Principles of Uncertainty. Peruse her whimsical musings but don’t get too comfortable with them online–they will magically become a real live book in the very near future.

    Update: Our dear friends at PBS (that’s Peter Buchanan-Smith) wrote in to remind us they were the designers of that beautiful book, as well as Kalman’s Elements of Style.

    50 Very Short Essays on Michael Bierut

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    There once was a designer so beloved that on the occasion of his 50th birthday, people from far and wide wanted to wish him well. So well, in fact, that the kingdom of Pentagram–housed in a castle in the biggest city in all the land–sent word to all their friends, all over the world, that they wanted to write a book dedicated to the fair designer. And it was a grand book, a book filled with 50 stories by people like the Valiant Knight Frank Gehry and Sir Massimo Vignelli and Lady Maira Kalman. And because the designer was so beloved, and because his friends were so kind, the book even included pictures. Like this:

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    Happy Belated Birthday to the King of Design.

    Kalman on Millman (and Heller on Kalman!)

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    There’s only one thing we love more than Maira Kalman, and that’s Debbie Millman talking to Maira Kalman.

    Catch the only illustrator worthy enough to take on The Elements of Style and the only reason we’d consider promising our first born child to TimesSelect on “Design Matters,” today at 3-4 EST.

    Even more Maira: Steven Heller discusses Kalman’s “suitcase project” at SVA in this Core77 broadcast.