The ten most popular essays of 2013 inchonological order:
Graphic Design Criticism as a Spectator Sport
Michael Bierut on logo redesign outrages, what they mean, and why we should demand more.
Let's Make A Mark
Ellen Susan proposes a new punctuation mark, the ElRey, for the digital-text era.
A Dictionary of Surrealism and the Graphic Image
An alphabetical guide to graphic designers influenced by Surrealism and to some key Surrealist concepts.
Head of the Dragon: The Rise of New Shanghai
On Places, Daniel recounts the fast-forward and often ruthless reinvention of Shanghai — its transformation from moth-balled relic of Maoism to one of the world's most dynamic and contradictory cities.
How to Design an Iconic NY Fast Food Joint
Design secrets of New York fast food icons.
The Irrational Exuberance of Rem Koolhaas
On Places, Ellen Dunham-Jones assesses the protean career of Rem Koolhaas and his provocative efforts to marry art and capitalism, radicalism and pragmatism, icon-making and city-making.
On a retrospective of the work of midcentury sculptor Ruth Asawa at Christie's, her first solo show in New York in 50 years.
South Africa: From Township to Town
On Places, Lisa Findley and Liz Ogbu describe the ongoing struggle to transform the once segrated black townships of South Africa into diverse and thriving towns.
Status Quo or Transformation? A False Choice
An open letter to AIGA.
In Memory of William Drenttel
It is with great sorrow that we announce that William Drenttel, who co-founded Design Observer ten years ago and was its mastermind, conscience, and animating spirit, died on December 21, after a year-and-a-half struggle with brain cancer. He was 60 years old.