The Casual Optimist

Books, Design and Culture

September 23, 2016
by Dan
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The Bolted Book

Designers & Books, in collaboration with the Center for Italian Modern Art in New York and the Mart, the Museum of modern and contemporary art of Trento and Rovereto, Italy, is launching a Kickstarter campaign on October 18 to publish a new facsimile … Continue reading

November 26, 2013
by Dan
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Julian Barnes on Lucian Freud

Julian Barnes reviews two recent books about the painter Lucian Freud — Man with a Blue Scarf by Martin Gayford and Breakfast with Lucian by Geordie Greig — for The London Review of Books: Freud was always a painter of the Great Indoors. Even … Continue reading

May 6, 2011
by Dan
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In the Wilds | Nigel Peake

With the winter winds and driving rain, things naturally fall apart — twisted, gnarled, and eventually incapable of function. When something goes wrong, the solution is often improvised with whatever is available. This haphazard collage of old materials can make … Continue reading

March 22, 2011
by Dan
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“Fuck The Midtones” — How To Make A Book With Steidl

Screening at MoMA next month, How To Make A Book With Steidl is an award-winning documentary by Jörg Adolph and Gereon Wetzel about book publisher Gerhard Steidl: (via Coudal. Of course.)

March 21, 2011
by Dan
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Benedikt Taschen | CBS News

A short profile of Benedikt Taschen from CBS Sunday Morning:

December 15, 2010
by Dan
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Midweek Miscellany

Beautiful typographic notecards by Chicago-based designer Tom Davie. The King of Comps — The prolific Ian Shimkoviak, one half of The Book Designers, interviewed at Caustic Cover Critic: Every designer has their way of doing things… For me, I start … Continue reading

October 1, 2008
by Dan
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Midweek Miscellany Oct 1, 08

Great book covers and  design by pioneering graphic designer Erik Nitsche on Flickr  . (Via Ace Jet 170 who has more Nitsche images). On the subject of Flickr , the San Francisco Chronicle visits the offices of the popular photo … Continue reading

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