Other

Jessica Helfand
Cock-a-Doodle-Don't
Where food is concerned, the relationship between what things look like and how we respond exists at its most primal level: what is a gut reaction, after all, if not something that attacks your gut?


William Drenttel
Design Matters Wins People’s Choice Design Award
Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum announced the People's Choice Design Award — and Design Observer's own Debbie Millman, the creator of the popular Design Matters series of podcast interviews, was the surprise winner.


William Drenttel
National Design Award Trophy
In October 2011, Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum unveiled a new trophy for the National Design Awards. Originally designed as an asterisk in silicon carbide by Winterhouse in 2000, the new glass trophy is by Corning GlassLab.



The Editors
Announcement: Rob Walker Joins Design Observer
We are pleased to announce that Rob Walker is joining Design Observer as a contributing writer — and as the newest blogger in our Observers Room.



Gail Anderson
Gail Anderson’s Collection of Salt and Pepper Shakers
Gail Anderson shares her collection of Salt and Pepper Shakers.



William Drenttel
Best of DOG 2010
Hardly exhaustive, here are some of the highlights of essays and blog posts on the Design Observer Group during 2010.



William Drenttel
Dogs and Their Designers
Design Observer posted an open call for designers to submit photos of themselves with their canine companions. These are the results...



Jessica Helfand
Cats and Their Designers
Behold: our collection of feline wonders, and the designers who named them.



Dmitri Siegel
Paper, Plastic, or Canvas?
Dmitri Siegel explores the explosive popularity of canvas totes and the history of the plastic bags they aim to replace. From Anya Hindmarch to Ireland's PlasTax, Siegel examines the role of design in sustainability.



The Editors
10 Reasons to Buy a Design Observer T-Shirt
Buy the Design Observer T-Shirt for a holiday gift.



The Editors
Design Observer T-Shirt
Design Observer offers a T-shirt through Artefacture.



The Editors
People's Design Awards
The People's Design Awards are happening as we speak — with public voting open until October 21st. Design Observer welcomes the support of our readers: VOTE TODAY.



The Editors
Design Observer's Aniversary Party: 11.05
Design Observer 5th Anniversary Party. NYC. 11.05.08.



William Drenttel
Hurricane Watch: Gustav Emergency Relief




Becky Neiman
Taking Things Seriously XIII




Paul Maliszewski
Taking Things Seriously XI




Julie Lasky
Cranbrook Commencement Address
"I come to you, like all commencement speakers, as an emissary from the future." The commencement address delivered by Julie Lasky at the Cranbrook Academy of Art on May 9, 2008.



Rosamond W. Purcell
Taking Things Seriously XII




The Editors
Slide Shows on Design Observer




Allan Chochinov
"Ode To My Toaster"
Ode To My Toaster, a poem by Allan Chochinov.



Luc Sante
Taking Things Seriously X




Joshua Glenn
Taking Things Seriously IX




John Keen
Taking Things Seriously VIII




Chika Azuma
Chika Azuma: Taking Things Seriously VII




Beth Daniels
Beth Daniels: Taking Things Seriously VI




Thomas Frank
Taking Things Seriously V




Carol Hayes
Taking Things Seriously IV




Greg Klee
Taking Things Seriously III




Steven Heller
It's Easy to Criticize. . . Not
Convention was disrupted last Thursday night in New York City at Designism 2:0 when the sometimes "self-congratulatory" nature of the Art Director Club's social conscience-raising event was upended by Vanity Fair media critic Michael Wolff's unforgiving critique of design's do-goodery.



Dmitri Siegel
Taking Things Seriously II




William Drenttel
Taking Things Seriously I




Rob Kimmel
Coney Island Bin Laden
In 2004, the paper targets at the Coney Island shooting gallery featured a hand-drawn Osama Bin Laden.



Steven Heller
The Designer As Gumshoe
The aim in this essay is not to raise mass consciousness about gum pollution. Over the past year, I've been something of a gumshoe, investigating and documenting patterns of gum goop, and talking to perpetrators and victims alike. Now I'm ready to share my findings.



William Drenttel
Project M
It is clear that in the last decade, the rural poor in America have gotten poorer. But having safe water is not something most of us think of as a problem in our country. If you'd like to help, Buy A Meter.



Jessica Helfand
My Dirty Little Secret
Gardening is its own infuriating design challenge. You fret and you rethink and you second-guess yourself constantly, and then for one delirious, thrilling moment something blooms and you feel utterly triumphant. And then it dies and you are back where you started.



Jessica Helfand
I'm Not Ready to Make Nice




Jessica Helfand
How Hollywood Nailed The Half-Pipe
Pixar
and Animal Logic have mastered a particularly persuasive (and as it turns out, rather literal) form of spin that makes Road Runner look like dryer lint.



William Drenttel
Polling Place Photo Project
The
Polling Place Photo Project seeks to advance innovation in citizen journalism by documenting local voter experiences during the U.S. midterm elections on Tuesday, November 7...



William Drenttel
Winterhouse Awards for Design Writing
In partnership with AIGA, we launched the Winterhouse Writing Awards for Design and Criticism, an initiative to increase the appreciation of design — by recognizing new voices in design criticism and commentary. Here are the 2006 recipients.



William Drenttel
Threat Advisory Pandemic Alert System (TAPAS)
How do we measure the danger level from the Avian Influenza A (H5N1) virus? What we lack is that one Tom Ridge-like bit of inspiration that would lend clarity to these confusing times. We took our cue from a certain John James Audubon. Herewith, one option for Homeland Security. Yes, we know: it's for the birds.



Adrian Shaughnessy
Living Without The Internet
The "community" that I find on the internet is the communality of shared enthusiasms for marginalised subjects.



William Drenttel
Dangerous Beauty: The Art of the Shiv
A shiv is a weapon crafted from the limited resources of a prisoner's closed world. Crudely constructed from such things as spoons, shoelaces and upholstery tacks, shivs are about masked utility: it's an innocuous object with improbably toxic intent (whether used to attack others or to protect oneself...).



Jessica Helfand
The Right Stuff
Prada is yet another in a long line of stories in which posessions loom large, at once shining beacons of material success and wagging fingers of moral turpitude. When will we have enough stuff?



Jessica Helfand
"Oui, Oui, Oui" All The Way Home
On a sweltering day last August, my daughter and I embarked with a friend on a 6-day tour of Paris: Kid Paris, the Paris of candy stores and carousels and more than a few weird new ice cream flavors.



William Drenttel
Weather Report: 53 Degrees F. Heavy Snowfall Predicted
The weather is fucked up. "Science is a way of making sense of the world. Design is a way of making the world make sense."






Jessica Helfand
Design Gone Mad




Jessica Helfand
A Blog Poem, Part I




Observed | September 22

Misaligned type. Inconsistent styling. The iOS 11 release is sloppy. [BV]


Observed | September 21

You need to listen to Change Lab: Conversations on Transformation and Creativity, a new podcast hosted by Lorne Buchman, president of ArtCenter College of Design. [BV]

The Independent Art Book Fair is this weekend, free, and in Brooklyn. And our friend Steve Kroeter, head of Designers and Books, will be featured on the panel discussion. [BV]


Observed | September 20

The toxic history of soda pop: Coca-Cola was viewed as a health drink, “containing the properties of the wonderful Coca plant and the famous Cola nuts.” Sounds uplifting. [BV]

The beauty of Slovakian Socialist Era sterile, geometric, old swimming pools. [BV]

Architectural cakes. Yum! [MPL]


Observed | September 19

“Real life” Lego House to open in Denmark this month. Hopefully it’s too big to step on. [BV]

In the you-can’t-make-this-up department: scientists once dressed frogs in tiny pants to study reproduction. [BV]

Penguin’s Steinbeck reissues feature Walker Evans Polaroids. [MPL]


Observed | September 18

Paul McNeil‘s six favorite faces. [MPL]

“Segregated Innovation”, or, why the empathy concept is deeply flawed. [JH]

An epic battle erupts between London‘s Science Museum + Natural History Museum during Twitter’s #AskACurator day. [BV]

Meet the font detectives. [MB]


Observed | September 15

Start you Friday right: A brief history of sex on the internet. [BV]


Observed | September 14

Expand your mind, or boggle it. “We are three-dimensional creatures living in a potentially 10-dimensional world.” [BV]

In India’s ‘rape capital,’ designers change how people picture assault. [BE]

Photographs lie. Even great photographs. Especially great photographs. [JH]


Observed | September 13

A look back at the design of the ten-pound note. [JH]

In design as in politics, who decides? [JH]

Design as a learning system, and other insights about where it’s all heading. [JH]


Observed | September 12

Steven Heller discusses the history and power of the swastika: from good to evil. [BV]

Roadways aren’t just the arteries of transportation and commerce, they can be the catalysts for more sustainable design. [BV]

The beautiful master plans of America’s national parks. [MB]

Is the act of standardization through design a subtle gesture of colonization? Skin color-tweaked emojis are only half the battle. Look at this. [JH]


Observed | September 11

The Voynich manuscript, “the world’s most mysterious manuscript”, appears to be some kind of medical encyclopedia, with detailed information on which herbs in what quantities can cure gynecological conditions. [BV]

The Nike hijab. [JH]

A search for the word “design” in google shows what it thinks you really want to ask for, which is “designated survivor”. (Try it.) Same goes for searching stock photos. Here’s what happens when you search for the word “woman”. [JH]

Why you’ve never heard of Gin Wong and what that says about the politics of architectural celebrity. [MB]


Observed | September 08

French artist JR comes up with this idea in a dream, and executes it. [JH]

Design and politics. [JH]



Jobs | September 22