Weekend Heller – March 22, 2013

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No Free Lunch! Yes Free Desk!

Open Studio Club’s “Free Desk Here” initiative asks creative agencies around the world to offer a free desk in their studio to a new talent. Nick Couch of Open Studio wrote to say, “I’m asking creative agencies to offer a free desk in their studio to a new talent. It’s all in the spirit of collaboration. I had the idea after running a brand consultancy called Figtree in London. I always felt we were at our best when we had a broad range of disciplines and talents in the studio. “The agency gets to decide who they offer the space to and the duration of their stay. It’s being supported by the graphic artist, Anthony Burrill who designed the limited edition screen-print to accompany the initiative.

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The first 50 studios to list a free desk will receive a Burrill signed, ‘Free Desk Here’ print.

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Great Posters: Czech!

On Sunday, March 24, the Poster museum in Hoorn, The Netherlands will open its doors for a special exhibition: Czech Posters From the Collection of the Lowry Family of New York City.

The posters, which date from 1898 to 1938, are a mirror of the social, economic, political and artistic influences that marked their era. The earliest images reflect the refined and elegant Art Nouveau style so popular throughout Europe at that time. Prior to the First World War, several prominent Czech poster designers reached an international audience via prominent books that published fine examples of their work. The Art Deco era is well represented, as are works by important Czech avant-garde artists.


The Lowry family has built their collection of Czech posters over the past 25 years, amassing more than 1,000 pieces—making it the largest collection in the world outside the Czech Republic. Father and son, George S. and Nicholas D. Lowry, have selected 121 highlights for the museum exhibition. The collection grew out of the family’s Czech origins and George and Nicholas’s mutual passion for these images. As owners of Swann Auction Galleries, they are no strangers to vintage posters, making this collection and exhibition a wonderful confluence of both personal and professional interests.

The exhibition opens on Sunday March 24 at 16:00 CET, and the official opening will be carried out by His Excellency Ambassador of the Czech Republic in Netherlands, Jaroslav Horák.

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The Fire of All Fires

Remember the Triangle Fire Coalition is planning to build a memorial to the 146 mostly immigrant women who died in 1911 in the Triangle fire. The group is now in the process of requesting designs for the Memorial and invite students and professionals to enter.


This memorial should recall not just the tragedy and every worker who perished, but also reflect the unique importance of the many workers’ rights movements, safety laws, and social welfare policies that resulted from this fire. The mission of The Coalition is to raise public awareness of the Triangle Fire and its legacy. Each year we remember the victims, mostly immigrant, mostly young, and mostly women, who died in the tragic fire. Register here.

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Mogubgub’s Paintings

Fred Mogubgub, pioneer animator (partner of Pablo Ferro) and painter, threw his cameras into the Hudson River when he decided to devote himself to painting. He died in 1989. I knew him when, in the 1970s, he made covers for the East Village Other, but I was aware of him when I was much younger because of his 3-story mural (below) on 3rd Avenue and 59th Street asking for $2 million to make a feature film. His animation was based on drawings and collage in a kinetic carnival the likes of which had not been seen before. His work will be on view starting March 28 at Ace and Son Moving Picture Company, LLC, 134 w. 26th street, #603, NYC. (Go here for a sample of his quick cut classic.)


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