Among the design magazines I keep in the piles around my desk (other than Print, EYE and Baseline), the German Form and the Japanese Idea are filled with great content. Form covers the wide range of industrial, product, graphic and sometimes architectural design; Idea alternates between in-depth content on personalities, genres, and movements impacting graphic design.
The current issue of Form tackles the perennial theme of good and bad design (and kitsch). Or as editor-in-chief Gerrit Terstiege aptly puts it: “A world full of visual atrocities and formal torturing techniques.” This includes the boundaries between kitsch, art, and ugliness—and a sampling of tasteless specimens from the world of product and graphic design. There is also a critique of aversion Karim Rashid. Terstiege does note that “at times the ugly can be so terribly beautiful that one simply cannot stop wanting more.” It’s all there to be seen by the eye of the beholder.
The current issue of Idea is almost entirely devoted to the master posterist, Tadanori Yokoo, showing selected Works from the 1960s and ’70s. His posters from this period are the quintessence of period raucousness as well as the defining images of the Japanese pop era. In fact, almost every issue of Idea provides a chapter of design history seen through the Japanese lens.
These two design magazines get the DH/A+