CRITIQUE: THE WAR OF DESIGN

September 18, 2019

Crits-Ian-Lynam-cover

At the printer now: a new 64-page zine about critique called CRITIQUE: THE WAR OF A̶R̶T̶ DESIGN, which is available for pre-order here: http://crit.wordshape.com.

A bit ago, a book about critique with the subtitle “A Student Manual” came out, but it sure didn’t feel like it was for students… or teachers, particularly of graphic design. I thought that the topic was deserving, so I wrote it, illustrated it, and designed it.

Edited by the intrepid Taro Nettleton and offset printed in 3 colors in Niigata, Japan with wraparound covers, CRITIQUE is an approachable and relatable guide to considering critique and criticism from a variety of viewpoints. Pre-orders receive bonus stickers and Risograph posters! Imagine: it’s like Kickstarter, but the project is already at the printer! You can’t lose! Also contains silly drawings of snakes playing saxophones! 🎷🐍 And a semiotics primer for the layperson! You too can ⚡️master⚡️the science of signs, symbols, and meaning! Order now! http://crit.wordshape.com

ATypI Tokyo 2019

September 7, 2019

atypi_tokyo_logo

I just gave a talk at ATypI Tokyo 2019 called “From Bijin-ga to Brutus”, which is derived from the latter part of my recent publication The Thing.

“From Bijin-ga to Brutus” is one of the least known stories in Japanese graphic design history is the emergence of Sun Studio / サン・スタジオ, one of Japan’s very first graphic design studios.

Sun Studio was run by poster designer Hokuu Tada / 多田北烏 (1889–1948), who influenced countless early graphic designers and typographers in Japan in the Taishō and Shōwa periods through his contributions to the literature of nascent commercial art. Posters designed by Tada for Kirin Beer festoon countless businesses in Japan today, intimating a sense of nostalgia and history in the bustling megalopolis—yet the story behind them is largely unknown.

Another important figure, one whose story has largely been disconnected from greater Japanese graphic design history, is Seiichi Horiuchi/ 堀内誠一 (1933–1987), whose design work for Japanese lifestyle magazines largely defines Japanese consumer-fashion culture today.

This heavily illustrated presentation will explore the direct historical connection between Tada and Horiuchi—from the birth of commercial art (商業美術) in Japan to the refinement of graphic design (グラフィックデザイン), helping to contextualize both historical and contemporary graphic design and typography.

Read more about the presentation here.

Arrow of Light

July 16, 2019

arrow_of_light1

I designed two logos for the Portland, Oregon supergroup Arrow of Light. This is one of them.

arrow_of_light2

This is the other.

arrow_of_light3

I also designed two new 24″ x 36″ fluorescent posters for them. Get them at their debut show!

 

DWPA!

June 25, 2019

dwpa

A recent logo design for the Democratic Women of the Prescott Area, as a feminist and an overseas voter in Arizona, it is a group that I am very proud to support.

Women have always been a key part of Arizona politics.  Jerry Emmett, the founder of the DWPA, who is now 104 years old, reminds us that in Arizona, women had the right to vote and hold office in 1912 as part of the state’s constitution eight years before the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The DWPA seeks to encourage women to participate in all levels of service and government whether running for office, or assuming support roles and leadership positions in our community and in our state.

The Democratic Women of the Prescott Area’s mission is to engage, unite, and empower women to promote the principles of the Democratic Party and to attain public office and leadership positions in Arizona.

The cat’s out of the bag!

June 22, 2019

calarts

I’ll be joining the CalArts MFA in Graphic Design Program as Visiting Critic this year, with 3 residencies working with MFA students on their thesis projects.

Portland Stamp Company with Mr. Keedy!

June 12, 2019

portland-stamp-company-jeff-keedy-ian-lynam-stamps-MAIN-5ca69504e116a-1110

Out now: a poster stamp design for The Portland Stamp Company designed with CalArts faculty member and longtme Emigre contributor Mr. Keedy.

Poster stamps are a design format that I include in lectures about some of Japan’s earliest graphic design publications in my Japanese Graphic Design History class. I am super-pumped that Josh Berger of Plazm/Portland Stamp Company (one of the first people to have ever given me a design-related job) invited us to create one—it is like living history all over again!

Keedy and I were interviewed about our poster stamp design here:

https://theportlandstampcompany.com/artist-series/ian-lynam-x-jeff-keedy/

(Soundtrack.)

Arts Excursions Unlimited reboot

May 17, 2019

arts_excursions_unlimited

We just redesigned and relaunched Arts Exursions Unlimited’s website. Check it out here: http://www.artsexcursionsunlimited.com/

Arts Excursions Unlimited is a free, community-driven, monthly arts and cultural experience for residents in the Greater Hazelwood neighborhoods of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. We are incredibly proud of our work with such a driven, socially engaged arts initiative.

Slanted #33

May 16, 2019

Slanted-Magazine-33-Prague-Special-Edition-Images-00

I have a new essay in Slanted #33 titled “Emmet”.

Slanted-Magazine-33-Prague-Special-Edition-Images-02

Or “Creation Story”.

Slanted-Magazine-33-Prague-Special-Edition-Images-18

Or “A Story for Design Teachers*”.

Slanted-Magazine-33-Prague-Special-Edition-Images-26

The subtitle is: “A parable about life, understanding, and getting out of the house.” An excerpt:

She took me to a house that was shared by a bunch of other people who had icons and symbols and writings on their faces and were also vegan and also wore black clothing that they sewed together with dental floss when it fell into disrepair which they rarely washed and which offered forth a gleam under the moonlight when they dug the things they would eat out of the dumpsters in the city.

They thought that I was like them and I thought that they were like me.

They were wrong.

I was wrong.

They thought I didn’t talk because I didn’t want to.

You can pick up a copy here: https://www.slanted.de/en/product/slanted-33-prague/

Total Armageddon

March 30, 2019

Slanted-Total-Armageddon_01

I am thrilled to announce that my newest book Total Armageddon is out now via Slanted Publishers.

Slanted-Total-Armageddon_03

When the Slanted editorial team asked me if I might be interested in editing a book that pulled the best writing from the first 32 issues of their magazine, I leaped at the chance. I invited some of my favorite design writers to contribute, as well, because I wanted Total Armageddon to be much more than just an anthology. I wanted it to stand as a mile marker in design theory, and I think it does just that.

Slanted-Total-Armageddon_02

Some of the best writing from the past decade-plus related to design is included, notably Randy Nakamura’s “On Equilibrium and Sottsass”, Natalia Ilyin’s “On Shooting Butterflies”, Kenneth FitzGerald’s “Singing the Surface” and Mr. Keedy’s “The Global Style”.

Slanted-Total-Armageddon_08

Total Armageddon is available here. I hope that you like it.

The Thing & Visual Strategies for the Apocalypse

March 15, 2019

New-titles-Update

I am very excited to announce that I have two brand-new booklets that just came out: The Thing and Visual Strategies for the Apocalypse.

TheThingFront-Cover-Update

The Thing is about the problematics of design, designers, and design history. It is an 88-page zine that examines thorny aspects of design, designers, and design history.

Also, The Thing glows in the dark.

TheThingSpread3

Topics within:
– Vikings
– Netflix binge-watching as a metaphor for lived experience
– Problematic relationships with objects
– Earthquakes which turned into literal firestorms which claimed the lives of hundreds of thousands of people
– Japanese graphic design history
– Picking locks
– Secrets behind how to edit
– Nostalgia
– Guilt and Shame

TheThingSpread4

You can see a microsite that I designed for The Thing here: http://thing.wordshape.com

VSFTAFront-Cover-Update

Visual Strategies for the Apocalypse is about overcoming what I term “Creative Constipation™”. It is a 112-page booklet with contributions from leading designers and design educators like Matthew Scott Barnes, Natalia Ilyin, Nikki Juen, Yoon Soo Lee, Matthew Monk, David Peacock, Michael Scaringe, and Lorena Howard-Sheridan, along with James Hultquist-Todd of JTD Type, James Edmondson of Oh No Type Co, visual artist Griffin McPartland, Adolf Loos and the late Koichi Sato.

VSFTASpread2

Topics within:

– The relationship between Big Tech and child labor
– The even more complicated relationship between Fast Fashion and Thor, God of Thunder
– Space, time and selfishness
– Contrast, cropping and partying
– Chance processes
– Imitation, flattery, history and desktop publishing
– Collage as strategy
– The function of drawing
– Ornament and making shit up

VSFTASpread5

More info about Visual Strategies for the Apocalypse is here in the micro-site that I designed for it: http://apocalypse.wordshape.com

|