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MOTI Hotel


MOTI Hotel
MOTI Museum, Breda
September 28, 2013 – June 1, 2014

Statement: «MOTI, Museum of the Image, possesses a very unique collection, which provides the basics for the visual culture we live in. Therefore, the museum wants to show its historic collection in a special way, this fall.
MOTI will invite 20 international and national artists to be their guests in the rooms in MOTI HOTEL. Among these guests are Antoine Peters, Hendrik Vibskov, Piet Parra and Philips Design. All guests will react to highlights of MOTI’s collection. What will be done to the I Love New York-logo by Milton Glaser? What reaction will be given to Anthony Burrill’s Work Hard & be Nice To People? You will be able to see the answer in MOTI HOTEL!
The participating designers are: Aram Bartholl, Anthony Burrill, Juul Hondius, Noortje van Eekelen, Paula Scher, Akatre, Martijn Engelbregt, NL Architects, Pinar & Viola, Niels Schrader, Antoine Peters, Dawn, Maurer United, Honey & Bunny, Atelier Ted Noten, Harmen Liemburg, MVRDV, AKV|St.Joost, Pictoplasma and Herman van Bostelen.
The public may choose three of their favourite new works from the exhibition. MOTI will purchase these three works to be part of the museum’s collection. Thus, because of this exciting exhibition, we expand our beautiful collection even further.»

The Center for Sensibility
Thesis project


The Center for Sensibility (Thesis project)
A project by communication design grad student Amanda Thomas
February 11-15, 2013
Discussion of the project: published on September 20, 2013,

Statement: (excerpt) «The Center for Sensibility, my thesis project, antagonized the practice of design and sought ways to productively work against prescribed notions of design practice. Inspired by Klein, I sought ways to immaterialize design, and to show that the doing nothing aspects of design—like research, writing, and organizing content—are viable parts of practice. I explored immateriality in two ways: 1) as a research-based process that enables me to bring new ideas to my practice and share them with others; 2) as immaterial design, forgoing a designed artifact for a designed experience, that permits a community to participate in my project. Inspired by relational design, I sought to eliminate disciplinary boundaries of my university (a school of art and design) to permit a cross-disciplinary dialog about graphic design. These ideas, I thought, could build towards interesting applications for critical practice. […]
Critical practice is not the same as expressing opinion or criticizing a finished design; it is not about taking to the comments section of a blog to tear down a designer or a design. Although that form of criticality is productive in its own right, critical practice is more about expressing disciplinary issues or concerns in ways that help define and strengthen the graphic design discipline.
The motivation for critical practice is within problem finding: locating issues or concerns within a discipline and exposing them to discussion. Or, in the case of Yves Klein, creating in a way that exposes and investigates the concern.
Immaterial design could be explored in two ways: first, as relational design that opens up the design process to others to contribute content […]. Relational design creates a system that permits relevant collaboration and production; it subverts design by allowing open-ended content that enables the ideas from many people, versus the sole authorship of the designer. Second, as the design of spaces and experiences—in other words, my system for relational design—that permit learning.
My research into Yves Klein manifested as a designed experience that, unlike finished designed artifacts, permits participants to be thoughtful and draw their own conclusions. I sought a dialogue about design; not a monologue.
I designed the Center for Sensibility, modeled after Klein’s own proposal for a center for sensibility, which was an interactive installation that, for one week, transformed a vacant hallway of my school into a collaborative, open-format workspace for collective thinking and doing. I used design to explore design, and as a means to connect to my community of other designers and artists. Encompassing the hallway walls, a large-scale typographic installation featured Yves Klein quotes and housed three interactive activities. These invited participant contributions which manifested as content within the installation. […]
I created a collaborative, open-format work zone by establishing three distinct areas within the 30′ hallway for content production. Each zone was nestled within one of the quotations on the wall. These invited participant contributions—via scanning books and displaying the print on a wall, or via open-ended responses to questions— which manifested as content within the installation. As the week went on, more content and more ideas about design enriched and sustained the investigation. Participants selected postcards that featured quotes about design (zone 1); they redefined design in their own terms using supplied books and scanning their definitions (zone 2); and, in a conceptual exchange inspired by Klein’s Zone of Immaterial Pictorial Sensibility, they traded responses to open-ended questions (zone 3).»

Read the full discussion of the project (and of the notion of critical design) posted by the project’s author/curator, Amanda Thomas, on

The Seymour & Milton Posters Show


The Seymour & Milton Posters Show
Kemistry Gallery, London
September 19 – November 2, 2013

Statement: «Kemistry Gallery are extremely proud to host an exhibition of work by Seymour Chwast & Milton Glaser. For the first time in over 40 years, the work of Push pin studio will be on show in London.
Graham McCallum, one of the founders of Kemistry Galley says: “As a young designer I went to a talk Milton and Seymour gave in London. They epitomised to me what being a designer was all about. They created work that was so fresh, intelligent, witty, thought-provoking and beautifully executed, I was in awe. 40 years later to be hosting an exhibition of their work is thrilling.”
Push pin Studios were a graphic design and illustration studio formed in New York City in 1954. For twenty years Glaser and Chwast directed Push pin, becoming one the most well respected studios in the world of graphic design.
The bi-monthly publication The Push Pin Graphic was a product of their collaboration, a selection of these will be on display during the show, alongside a series of posters and rarely seen sketches from the early days of Pushpin as well as more recent work. Push pin has gone on to become a guiding reference in the world of graphic design. Today, Chwast is principal of The Push pin Group Inc, while Milton runs his own studio in New York.
A selection of prints and posters will be available to purchase at the gallery and online, each print will be limited, signed and numbered. A poster designed by Milton & Seymour especially for the exhibition will also be available.»

Ulm School of Design
From the Zero Hour to 1968

Plakat HfG_1.78423

Ulm School of Design: From the Zero Hour to 1968
(new permanent exhibition)
HfG Archive Ulm
open from September 13, 2013

Statement: «As of September 14, and under the title The Ulm School of Design – From the Zero Hour to 1968, the HfG Archive, a department within the Ulm Museum, is presenting a new permanent exhibition on the history of this legendary academy. During its existence between 1953 and 1968 the Ulm School of Design became one of the world’s most influential academies for designers. Here such iconic designs as the Ulm stool and the stacked tableware TC 100 were made, and also the Braun company’s radio-phono combination SK 4, known as “Snow White’s coffin.” The “ulm model” that was developed at the HfG was a design concept based on science and technology, and it sets standards to this day.
The new presentation covers around 275 square meters and includes more than 200 exhibits and numerous photographs from the comprehensive inventory at the HfG Archive in Ulm. With this rich collection of works and documents and the proximity to the former Ulm School premises, Ulm is the only place where the history of the School can be experienced in this way.
The exhibition design was done by Ruedi Baur and his team from the Laboratoire Irb Paris. Their aim was to bring the archive to life.
The exhibition is divided into three main sections, beginning with a quick presentation of the key features of the immediate postwar “Zero Hour” and the years before the Ulm School was founded. The core of the exhibition design is two large shelf components. The first shows the history of the Ulm School chronologically, together with designs, models, and projects from these years. The second shelf presents selected concepts and themes alphabetically from A to Z, all of which help to understand a wide range of issues associated with the Ulm School. The founders of the School, Inge Aicher-Scholl, Otl Aicher, and Max Bill, are also featured in the exhibition. Two large tables are dedicated to temporary exhibitions. For the new opening, these will be used as large “newspapers” showing interesting examples of how the press reported on the Ulm School.
Since 1993, the HfG Archive has been a department within the Ulm Museum. The Archive had been set up back in 1987, with the assistance of former Ulm School students. In 2011 the HfG Archive moved to premises in the former Ulm School of Design building at Am Hochsträß.
The exhibition space has now been expanded, and from fall 2013 the HfG Archive will be able to present the history of the Ulm School in our new permanent exhibition with more scope than has previously been possible.»

Exhibition design: Ruedi Baur
Support: «The exhibition is supported by the Department of Culture and the Media of the German Federal Government, the Ministry of Science, Research and Art of Baden-Württemberg, and the City of Ulm.»


Additional description of the installation concept is available from Ruedi Baur’s website (from which the images below are taken)


Collecting History, Collecting Design


Collecting History, Collecting Design
Pratt GradComD Gallery, New York
September 9 – November 25, 2013

Curators: Patricia Belen and Greg D’Onofrio (Display)
Statement: «Collections tell stories. From the experimental to the playful to the rational, Collecting History, Collecting Design shows a distinct point-of-view about mid 20th century graphic design and some of its pioneers working in the United States, Italy, and Switzerland–when Modernism’s distinctive graphic language emerged as an integral part of mass culture, from advertising and publicity to corporate identity.
This unique collection of over 150 works from “Display, Graphic Design Collection” highlights important building blocks of graphic design’s historical record featuring the varied and unique styles and sensibilities of the work of lesser-known designers and the lesser-known work of well-known design pioneers.»

More images available via flickr

Romek Marber: Graphics

(image via

Romek Marber: Graphics
School of Art’s Minories Galleries, Colchester
August 31 – October 26, 2013

Statement: «A retrospective of graphic work designed by Romek Marber for Penguin books, The Economist, New Society, Town and Queen magazines, Nicholson’s London Guides, BBC TV, Columbia Pictures, London Planetarium and others.»

Some more information (and images of the installation) are available

Most Beautiful Swiss Books 2012

Most Beautiful Swiss Books 2012 (awarded in January 2013)
first held at Helmhaus Zürich, Zurich, June 28-30, 2013
and later traveling to other venues (see schedule)

Statement: «The Swiss Federal Office of Culture organizes the competition ‘The Most Beautiful Swiss Books’ on an annual basis. It thereby recognizes excellence in the field of book design and production, as well drawing attention to remarkable and contemporary books by Swiss designers, printers and publishers. For the first time in the history of this competition, over 450 books were submitted to the competition. While the number of submitted books was relatively stable at around 400 books per year, this year’s numbers are witness to the fact that designers, printers and publishers are keen to submit their work to an expert jury. The independent, five-member jury presided by Manuel Krebs, considered all entries and selected 19 books as the most beautiful Swiss books of 2012. The Jan Tschichold Award 2013, which honours excellence in the field of book design, goes to the typographer and graphic designer François Rappo from Lausanne.
From June 27 to 30th 2013, ‘The Most Beautiful Swiss Books‘ will be exhibited at the Helmhaus Zürich, alongside the simultaneous publication of the catalogue showcasing the competition (design: Aude Lehmann). On the occasion of the exhibition opening, the Jan Tschichold Award winner will be presented his award. In the context of the exhibition, a book fair, ʻPublishers‘ Tablesʻ, presenting recent publications from small Swiss and European presses, will be held on Saturday, June 29th, 2013.
In the autumn of 2013, the books will be shown at the School of Design in St. Gall, on the occasion of the type design conference Typo St. Gallen. The exhibition will also travel to CIRCUIT Espace d’art contemporain in Lausanne, and for the fifth time in as many years, the books will be exhibited in Lavin/Engadin. As in the previous year, all the submitted books entered into the competition will be displayed alongside the award-winning titles.
Hosted by a variety of institutions and local actors, the books will also travel to other cities abroad, such as London (Helvetic Centre), Oslo (Grafill), Paris (Centre culturel suisse), Vienna (Typographische Gesellschaft Austria) and others.»

See also previous editions.

Memory Palace


Memory Palace
Victoria and Albert Museum, London
June 18 – October 20 2013

Curators: Laurie Britton Newell & Ligaya Salazar (read their notes on the project here)
Statement: «Sky Arts Ignition: Memory Palace brings together a new work of fiction by the author Hari Kunzru with 20 original commissions from leading graphic designers, illustrators and typographers to create a multidimensional story.
The way we read books is changing. Memory Palace explores how a story might be imagined in a different format – as a walk-in book.
The Story
Hari Kunzru’s story is set in a future London, hundreds of years after the world’s information infrastructure was wiped out by an immense magnetic storm. Technology and knowledge have been lost, and a dark age prevails. Nature has taken over the ruins of the old city and power has been seized by a group who enforce a life of extreme simplicity on all citizens. Recording, writing, collecting and art are outlawed.
The narrator of the story is in prison. He is accused of being a member of a banned sect, who has revived the ancient ‘art of memory’. They try to remember as much of the past as they can in a future where forgetting has been official policy for generations. The narrator uses his prison cell as his ‘memory palace’, the location for the things he has remembered: corrupted fragments and misunderstood details of things we may recognise from our time. He clings to his belief that without memory, civilisation is doomed.
The Commissions
The chosen practitioners work across a variety of fields, from comics and editorial illustration to advertising and typography. The broad selection of contributors demonstrates the exceptionally diverse and expanding worlds of contemporary graphic design and illustration.
Kunzru’s story is written in a series of short passages that move in a non-linear way through the dystopian world he created. Each of the designers and illustrators worked on a different passage of text from the story, responding freely to the text. The resulting commissions vary dramatically in scale and format, from intricate hand-drawn works to large three-dimensional environments.»

Sponsor/Funding: SkyArts Ignition

V&A’s website offers additional information and interesting resources – including videos that show the installations and their making of. Here below one of these videos, showing Erik Kessel’s work.

Erik Kessels from Victoria and Albert Museum on Vimeo.

Catalogue/book: V&A Publishing


A review of the exhibition by Catharine Rossi – including images of the installations – available from Domusweb


(image via

Occuprint: We are the 99%
ar/ge Kunst, Bolzano
June 14 – August 03, 2013

Curator: Luigi Fassi in collaboration with
Statement: «The Occupy phenomenon began with the occupation of Zuccotti Park, Wall Street, New York City, on 17 September 2011, and then quickly spread to 82 countries, unleashing an unexpected global wave of protest, renewal and hope for change in the midst of the economic and social crisis that has gripped most of the Western world.
At the high point of the movement’s political innovation, the curatorial collective Occuprint was formed in the United States to grant visibility to the most outstanding artistic manifestations produced by the Occupy Movements on an international scale. The trigger was an invitation by the Occupy Wall Street Journal to create a special issue on poster art, in a continuously growing digital platform that conserves and promotes the graphic output of the various Occupy Movements scattered across the continents.
The posters gathered by Occuprint concentrate on messages and proposals aimed at changing the relationship between the 1% of the world population accused of perpetrating policies for its own gain, and the 99% that is subjected to their consequences. Precisely the statement “We are the 99%” returns most often as a slogan in the materials on display at ar/ge kunst, bearing witness to the collective, worldwide character of the Occupy phenomenon. Resistance, dismantling of the status quo of privilege and absolute opposition to any top-down, anti-democratic policy are thus the key concepts of the Occupy ideology as it is reflected in the posters.
The main characteristic of the posters shown at ar/ge kunst is their way of representing a true programmatic agenda, ranging from international policy proposals to the renewal of modes of industrial production and labor, all the way to the definition of a new ethical model of collective welfare, based on principles of solidarity and sharing of public assets. The idea of democracy as the sharing of the commons is thus contrasted with the greed of privatizations dictated by neoliberal policies of an American matrix that meet with increasing consensus among European governments.
The Occuprint collection thus reveals political and economic discourse that is much more complex than it might appear at first glance. Slogans, quips, satirical drawings – ranging from Native Americans to the Wall Street bull to protests in Spanish in South American countries, and those in various European cities, form a semiotic arsenal that sums up, in quick lines, all the unsolved problems the Western world will have to approach in the years to come.
Viewers, including those unaware of the Occupy movements, are thus presented with an overview of the new scenarios that enliven the political debate on a global scale; not the official debate of parliaments and governments, but the more authentic discussion, the reaction that comes from the bottom up as the result of the action of the new citizens of the world, in all the cities of the contemporary world.»
Support: Provincia Autonoma di Bolzano, Alto Adige, Deutsche Kultur; Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio, Alto Adige; Città di Bolzano, Ufficio Cultura

Learn to Read Art: A Surviving History of Printed Matter, Inc.

(via manystuff)

Learn to Read Art: A Surviving History of Printed Matter, Inc.
Art Basel, Basel, June 13-16, 2013

Statement: «At this year’s Art Basel, Printed Matter will present Learn to Read Art: A Surviving History of Printed Matter, Inc., an exhibition engaging the documented history of the organization as it intersects with the broader field of contemporary artists’ books. The show is curated by Max Schumann, Associate Director. Special thanks to Art Basel for the kind invitation to present this exhibition.
Learn to Read Art: A Surviving History of Printed Matter, Inc. assembles a visually dense vitrine- and wall-based presentation featuring a broad range of material produced by the organization since its founding in 1976. Borrowing its name from a text by Lawrence Weiner, ‘Learn to Read Art’ has been used variously by Printed Matter starting in the early 90’s, including for past exhibitions curated by former Director AA Bronson. The exhibition puts on view material from the Printed Matter Archive that was damaged during basement flooding following Hurricane S
andy in 2012.
The presentation will be focused around a chronological wall installation of announcement cards, flyers, press releases, posters, and other ephemera documenting the organization’s programming history through artist installations, book launches, panels, performances, and other events. The show includes images of the long-running window installations organized by Lucy Lippard, featuring early-career exhibitions by Jenny Holzer, Barbara Kruger and Richard Prince, among
many others.
In addition, correspondences between administrators and artists / publishers give a unique view into the early history of Printed Matter. In these papers the founding members are seen formulating the mission, founding strategy and practice of the organization in the context of the broadening appeal and impact of artists’ publications as a medium. One text from Lippard, titled Artists’ Books: An Easy Way Out, shows her edits on a manuscript that would appear in Art in America in 1977 under the header The Artist’s Book goes Public.

Also included is a survey of artists’ publications, early book catalogs, and special editions published by Printed Matter through to the present. This is supplemented by an array of artists’ books, distributed through the years by the organization, that exemplify the richness and diversity of forms, strategies and processes encompassed by the field of artists’ books.»

More images can be found at

See also previous installations/exhibitions of Printed Matter’s output, under the title Learn to Read Art: A History of Printed Matter (2011)