The Casual Optimist

Books, Design and Culture

April 13, 2017
by Dan
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Dystopia

Tom Gauld for The Guardian.

May 20, 2016
by Dan
2 Comments

A Dirge for a New World

Andrew F. Sullivan, author of ultra-violent urban noir WASTE, reviews Ben Wheatley’s adaptation of High-Rise by J.G. Ballard for TIFF.Net: Wheatley and Ballard point to a pattern—a dissolution of social order that cannot be prevented by technology or progress. Even … Continue reading

February 19, 2016
by Dan
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J.G. Ballard Series by Stanley Donwood

Some how I missed these when they were first published in 2014, but British publisher Fourth Estate has reissued 21 books by J.G. Ballard with covers designed Stanley Donwood. Donwood, who is perhaps best known for his artwork for Radiohead, talked about … Continue reading

November 12, 2014
by Dan
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Describing the Indescribable: Jeff VanderMeer and Peter Mendelsund in Conversation

If you only bookmark one long(ish) thing to read today, make sure it’s the slightly bonkers conversation between Jeff VanderMeer, author of the Southern Reach Trilogy, and book designer Peter Mendelsund at Boing Boing: JV: I very much like how … Continue reading

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