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No. 216: Announcing the AIGA Design Conference Lineup, Chicago Design Week’s WaAAavy Website, a Takenobu Igarashi Monograph + More

Hello and welcome to your weekly Design Diary, a collection of all of the best things that came through our feeds, into our inboxes, and across our desks IRL this week—as always, we save the best for you.

For more along these lines (and so many others) follow us all day, every day on Instagram @AIGAeyeondesignFacebook, and Twitter @AIGAeyeondesign.

1
Takenobu Igarashi: A to Z, published by Volume

Japanese designer and sculptor Takenobu Igarashi rose to prominence in the 1970s with his 3D alphabets that sprung off of his celebrated posters and created a new typographic language. In the ’80s, he moved on to alphabet sculptures and product design, working with designers like Massimo Vignelli and Alan Fletcher. Several of his works have been acquired by MoMA’s permanent collection, and now, a retrospective of his work will be published in a new monograph.

Eschewing the chronological storytelling of most monographs, A to Z follows Igarashi’s work via the alphabet, showing his landmark projects along the way, as well as production sketches and other previously unseen work. According to the fundraising campaign for the book, it focuses in on his typographic experiments and explores his 3D letterforms in “forensic detail.” Backers of the campaign will get a one-of-a-kind edition, as each book is printed with one of 26 different letterforms and enclosed in a foil-covered case. Really, really lovely stuff.

2
Volume: a publishing platform for high-quality illustrated books

On that note, if you haven’t been paying attention to Volume, the publisher of the aforementioned Igarashi book, we highly recommend you do so. Billed as a “publishing platform for illustrated books,” Volume is a startup arm of Thames & Hudson, founded by Lucas Dietrich and Darren Wall. It takes a cue from Kickstarter, raising funds for all its books through crowdfunding campaigns before they go into production.

Volume’s been on our radar for a minute, but we’re already starting to see some titles we’re very excited about; in addition to the Igarashi monograph, Volume launched with Look & See, a trip through the archives of printmaker Anthony Burrill. And coming up is Ralph Waldo Emerson’s Self Reliance, designed by none other than design crush Irma Boom.

Given how well design books tend to do with crowdfunding campaigns—and how expensive they tend to be to produce—this seems like a smart publishing venture. We’re eager to see where it goes.

3
Periferia by Andrés Sandoval

A new book called Periferia has recently come to our attention, and we’re impressed by the artistry that’s gone into this slender, accordion-folded volume. Its publisher, Tower Block Books, calls it “a drawing-disguised-as-a-book,” though we’d also add it’s a collection of stamps disguised as a drawing (disguised as a book).

It’s authored by the architect-turned-artist Andrés Sandoval, who created the first version in a Moleskine accordion sketchbook, and it includes lovely red-ink images of palm trees, housing estates, traffic jams, strikes, and floods—all made of small stamps. Sandoval’s depiction of São Paulo using one of the simplest tools—the stamp—has us blown away.

4
Chicago Design Week website

The theme of this year’s Chicago Design Week (October 27-November 3), “Design in Motion,” is cleverly reflected on its website, designed by One Design Company and Malven Co. Let your eyes swim in its undulating pattern, move your mouse around and watch as it morphs in a soothing dance with your arrow. Scroll through the programming lineup and the undulation matches the speed of your scroll. A thoughtful design to complement what looks like an excellent week.

5
AIGA Design Conference 2019 lineup announced

And last but not least, AIGA is celebrating its own forthcoming event, the 2019 AIGA Design Conference. The speaker lineup was just announced and it’s looking very impressive indeed, with machine learning design researcher Caroline Sinders; OCD co-founder Bobby Martin; designer, author, and artist Silas Munro; and inclusive design guru Kat Holmes (plus many more). It’s going to be a very good conference year, and in Pasadena, CA, no less. Buy your tickets now and get that sweet early-bird price

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