Weekend Heller: Design Talks, Famous Femmes, Totem Poles, Hand Therapy, Letter Pressings

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Hail Hail Hall of Femmes

Design Talks 2013 is a two-day event in Stockholm, Sweden, on May 16–17, presented by Hall of Femmes (and its founders Samira Bouabana and Angela Tillman Sperandio) and hosted by Moderna Museet with prominent speakers from the international world of design, fashion and magazines. It is a continuation of the extensive research and the contacts that were made in the making of the Hall of Femmes book series. During two days, Design Talks will serve as an inspiring platform where conversations, lectures, screenings and discussions call attention to the design scene of the future. All lectures and discussions will be held in English.


In conjunction with Design Talks, the most recent edition of Hall of Femmes on Janet Froelich, with a foreword by me, will be published. “The project started as a personal desire to find female role models in graphic design,” write the founders, “a field where women’s contribution to developing the profession had not been documented or had enough recognition.” Bouabana and Sperandio travelled several times to New York to meet with a few of the female giants of the design world, where they interviewed them about work and career opportunities, mentorship and what it’s like to be a woman in the design world. These conversations have been transformed into the HoF series, which includes profiles on Lella Vignelli, Tomoko Miho, Paula Scher, Lillian Baseman and Ruth Ansel, among others. All can be purchased from Oyster Press for a mere 15 Euro. And HoF podcasts of some of the inductees can be downloaded here for nothing, which is actually quite a big something.

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Design Criticism: The Saturday Conference

Tomorrow is the 2013 SVA MFA D-Crit Conference (go here for details) “counter / point.” Saturday, May 11, 12:30–7:00 p.m. Visual Arts Theatre, 333 West 23rd Street. It is moderated by NPR’s “The Takeaway” host John Hockenberry, and features graduating students of the SVA MFA in Design Criticism.


Visit @dcritconference.

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Totem Poles Are Back

School of Visual Arts (SVA) presents “Tall Tales,” an exhibition of uniquely conceptual designs by first-year MFA Design: Designer as Author + Entrepreneur students. Curated by Kevin O’Callaghan, the exhibit reimagines the classic totem pole within the context of a modern story and design approach. While some tackle heavy socio-political issues such as the housing crisis and methods of torture, others celebrate the lighter side of things, with a timeline of donut flavors and the evolution of gaming consoles. The stories are as diverse as the materials used to tell them; from paper, to plexi, to found metal and wood, the show promises to be as inspiring as it is though-provoking.


The exhibit includes 20 totem poles and will be on view from May 14th through May 25th at the SVA Gallery, 209 East 23rd Street, New York City.

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The Hand is Mightier Than the Mind

Everyone has a personal signature. Sometimes it is found in handwriting. Did you know the pseudo-science of Grapho-Therapy can help you to change your handwriting and change your life?! This is the art of improving your personality by making changes in in your personality through just a few bold strokes.

hand writing

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The Beauty of Letterpress

A few weeks ago, DH reported the launch of The Beauty of Letterpress, the world’s first, virtual community-based gallery for letterpress printing by Neenah Paper and Two Paperdolls. Since then, dozens of letterpress artisans from around the world have uploaded their innovative work, from love tags, to business cards to “plantable” cards. And, the site has raised $14k+ to help save printing history through the sale of limited edition prints. For each print sold, Neenah Paper doubles the donation, and the monies go to preserve Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum.


The second limited edition print, Issue 2, has just launched, designed and printed by Studio on Fire. For each $5 print = $10 goes to Hamilton. A very small “price” to help save letterpress printing history.


For more Steven Heller, check out Citizen Designer: Perspectives on Design Responsibility, one of the many Heller titles available at MyDesignShop.com.