Insights per Minute

Steven Heller
Steven Heller on Mentors
Steven Heller is the co-chair (with Lita Talarico) of the School of Visual Arts MFA Design / Designer as Author + Entrepreneur program and the SVA Masters Workshop in Rome. He is a prolific writer.


Sandra Nuut
Sandra Nuut on Fashion
Sandra Nuut is investigating spaces for contemporary fashion curation inside and beyond the museum, and is analyzing the collision between culture and commerce.


Hala Abdul Malak
Hala A. Malak on Lomo
Hala A. Malak is a design critic, curator, branding consultant, and Middle East expert with her own particular view of the world.


Frederico Duarte
Frederico Duarte on Boarding Passes
Frederico Duarte graduated from D-Crit with his thesis on the influence of social changes on product and furniture design in Brazil.


Bryn Smith
Bryn Smith on Designer Dogs
Bryn Smith is a writer, graphic designer, and critic based in Brooklyn. She writes about design for Core77, Designers & Books and L’ArcoBaleno, among others, and teaches in the graduate graphic design program at the Rhode Island School of Design.


Angela Riechers
Angela Riechers on Banks
Angela Riechers is a Brooklyn-based art director and writer specializing in design, media, and visual culture.


Brigette Brown
Brigette Brown on Umbrellas
Brigette Brown is a 2013 graduate of SVA MFA Design Criticism program who has worked for the Museum of Latin American Art, written for Disegno and Surface, researched for Metropolis, and edited a publication for Domus.


Anne Quito
Anne Quito on Quiet
Anne Quito will graduate in May 2014 from SVA’s MFA Design Criticism program. In 2009, she earned a master’s degree in Visual Culture from Georgetown University.


Anna Marie Smith
Anna Marie Smith on “Apples to Apples”
Anna Marie Smith is currently working on her MFA in Design Criticism from the School of Visual Arts, with particular interest in social media, video game design, and branding within the Young Adult demographic.


Krista Donaldson
Krista Donaldson on Users
Krista Donaldson, PhD, is a mechanical and design engineer based in San Francisco who focuses on development in less industrialized economies as CEO of the nonprofit firm D-Rev (Design Revolution).


Mariana Amatullo
Mariana Amatullo on Honesty
Mariana co-founded Designmatters in 2001. As the head of the Department, she is responsible for the strategic leadership of a dynamic portfolio of global and national educational projects, research collaborations and publications at the intersection of art and design education and social innovation.



Wendy Ju
Wendy Ju on Fun
Wendy Ju is a PhD graduate of the Center for Design Research at Stanford University, and the founder of Ambidextrous magazine, Stanford University's Journal of Design.



Enrique Allen
Enrique Allen on Introductions
Enrique Allen is currently the co-director of the Designer Fund where he provides angel funding, mentorship and connections to designers creating businesses with positive social impact.


Sean Adams
Sean Adams on Typography
Sean Adams is a partner at AdamsMorioka in Beverly Hills. Sean is President ex officio and past national board member of AIGA, and President ex officio of AIGA Los Angeles. He teaches at Art Center College of Design.


Gabriel Brodbar
Gabriel Brodbar on Iatrogenesis
Gabriel Brodbar is the Executive Director of the NYU Reynolds Program in Social Entrepreneurship at New York University.


David Womack
David Womack on Space
David Womack is the executive creative director of experience design in the mobile and social group at R/GA. He is also on the faculty of the MFA in interaction design program at School of Visual Arts in New York.


Steff Geissbühler
Steff Geissbühler on Color Blind
Steff Geissbühler is among America’s most celebrated designers of integrated brand and corporate identity programs.


Liz Gerber
Liz Gerber on Feedback
Liz Gerber is the Junior Breed Chair of Design at Northwestern U. and Faculty Founder of Design For America.


Rob Forbes
Rob Forbes on Perfection
Rob Forbes’ career includes work in both the Arts and Business fields. Forbes is best known as the Founder of Design Within Reach and for the vision of a business that has grown into the leading retail destination for modern design in the US.


Jake Nickell
Jake Nickell on Creating
Jake Nickell is the co-founder of skinnyCorp and Threadless.com, along with a “bunch of other little projects”.


Sara Ivry
Sara Ivry on Language
Sara Ivry is the host of Vox Tablet, the weekly podcast of Tablet Magazine, and a writer who has contributed to the New York Times, Bookforum, the Boston Globe, and other publications.


J.D. McClatchy
J. D. McClatchy on Relationships
J. D. McClatchy is the author of six books of poetry and many texts for musical settings, including eight opera libretti.


Steven Heller
Steven Heller on Recommendations
Steven Heller is the co-chair (with Lita Talarico) of the School of Visual Arts MFA Design / Designer as Author + Entrepreneur program and the SVA Masters Workshop in Rome. He is a prolific writer.


John Foster
John Foster on Colloquialisms
John Foster has been a longtime collector of self-taught art and vernacular photography, as well as an artist, designer, and art curator.


Chip Kidd
Chip Kidd on Ready
Chip Kidd is a Designer/Writer in New York City. His book cover designs for Alfred A. Knopf, where he has worked non-stop since 1986, have helped create a revolution in the art of American book packaging.


Natalie Foster
Natalie Foster on Sharing
Natalie Foster is the Executive Director and Co-Founder of Peers.


Adam Harrison Levy
Adam Harrison Levy on Questions
Adam Harrison Levy is a writer and film-maker. He teaches at the School of the Visual Arts. In 2012 he was a Poynter Fellow at Yale University.


Thomas Fisher
Thomas Fisher on Survival
Thomas Fisher is dean of the College of Design at the University of Minnesota.


Mark Lamster
Mark Lamster on Complaining
Mark Lamster is the architecture critic of the Dallas Morning News and a professor at the University of Texas at Arlington School of Architecture.


Marvin Heiferman
Marvin Heiferman on Photography
Marvin Heiferman, a curator and writer, develops exhibitions, websites and publications that explore visual culture.


Joanna Radin
Joanna Radin on Potential
Joanna Radin is Assistant Professor in the Section for the History of Medicine at Yale University, where she also holds affiliations with the departments of History and of Anthropology.


John Maeda
John Maeda on Loops
We’re in the same loop. Culture lags. Art and design have to pick up the slack.


Wendy MacLeod
Wendy MacLeod on Fasting
Wendy MacLeod ia an award-winning playwright.


Ricky Jay
Ricky Jay on Collecting
Ricky Jay is considered one of the world's great sleight of hand artists.


Alice Twemlow
Alice Twemlow on Home
Alice Twemlow is the co-founder and chair of a two-year graduate program in Design Criticism at the School of Visual Arts in New York City. She is also a PhD candidate in the History of Design department at the Royal College of Art, London.


Nicholas Christakis
Nicholas Christakis on Networks
Nicholas A. Christakis, MD, PhD, MPH, is a social scientist and physician who conducts research on social factors that affect health, health care, and longevity.


Ralph Caplan
Ralph Caplan on Titles
Ralph Caplan is a writer and communications consultant and lectures on design. He is the former editor-in-chief of I.D. Magazine and the author of several books.


Rob Walker
Rob Walker on Seeing
Rob Walker is a technology/culture columnist for Yahoo News. He is the former Consumed columnist for The New York Times Magazine, and has contributed to many publications.


Jessica Helfand
Jessica Helfand on Brevity
Jessica Helfand, a founding editor of Design Observer, is an award-winning graphic designer, writer, and educator.



Observed | February 17

As the White House aims to stifle climate science, cities cooperate globally and plan locally, standing up to climate change. [BV]

The crude, vulgar, and celebrated art of Jean Dubuffet. [MPL]

Donald Judd on the relationship of artists and politics, 1970. [MB]

The most despised piece of furniture in the world has a name: Peggy. [MB]


Observed | February 16

The Statue of Liberty was modeled after an Arab woman. [MB]

Pratt Institute President Tom Schutte is the recipient of the 21st Rowena Reed Kostellow Award. [JH]

Why symbols matter. [MB]

Detroit, Design and the Future of Work—Detroit’s first exhibition as a UNESCO City of Design  [BV]

A Bug‘s Life meets Mulan and takes the form of this chair. [MPL]

Why do we have Wingdings and Dingbats? This short video explains all! [MB]


Observed | February 15

In the New Yorker this week, Design Observer contributor Rob Walker reviews the new Netflix series on design. [JH]

Charles and Ray Eames: a remembrance. [JH]

Fast Company‘s list of 2017‘s most innovative companies is out! [MPL]

What does industrialization look like? Take an aerial view.. [MPL]

Vasjen Katroi, a designer in Albania, makes a poster a day for a year. [JH]

Can corporate culture be designed? [JH]


Observed | February 14

Ikea’s best designed product of all time, according to it’s design chief. [JH]

If “design” becomes a synonym for “negotiate” we’re all in trouble. [JH]


Observed | February 13

“Almost alone among his countrymen, Johnson carried off his noxious politics with style.” Philip Johnson and the new American Fascism. [MB]

Journalist, curator, and longtime Head of Design at the V&A in London, Kieran Long is named Director of the Swedish Centre for Architecture and Design. [JH]

From The Atlantic, a deep dive into Apple’s flawless design aesthetic—and why it may just be a myth. [JH]

Madeline Stuart, who has Down Syndrome, designs and launches her own fashion line. [JH]


Observed | February 10

Timely explainer: what does the US Department of Housing and Urban Development actually do? [MB]

Creative dissent is central to political change. [MPL]

Ads, shorts, and the creative process of PES. (You have to watch “Fresh Guacamole.” You just have to.) [MPL]

“Anti-homeless” spikes have been removed in Manchester after locals kept covering them with cushions. [MB]


Observed | February 09

Next week in New York City: the remarkable Cliff Kuang on the untold story of design thinking. [JH]

Wallow in the beautiful custom version of Didot used by CBS in the 1960s, and don’t miss the comments. (Via Alexandra Lange.) [MB]

An interview with Obama‘s White House photographer. [MPL]

Using design to drive student performance. [JH]



Jobs | February 20