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Weekend Heller: Itching Design, Invasive Ads

Itching to Read About Graphic Design

Looking for a good mid-Summer read? Something for the beach, perhaps. I highly recommend Scratching the Surface, a collection of essays and journalism by Adrian Shaughnessy, focusing mainly on graphic design, essays have from Design Observer, Eye, Creative Review, Design Week and The Wire. Many others.

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The design is as minimal as can be without being empty pieces of paper. Don’t get me wrong, the purely white cover with the purple page edges makes me want to hold and touch the book (with clean hands, of course). It is an example of the smart design, editing and writing that Tony Brook and Shaughnessy’s Unit Editions has been producing for the past two years. Scratching the Surface is a book for anyone with an itch to “scratch the surface of the cultural zeitgeist.”

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Mad About Ads

Want access to over 3,300 advertising items and publications dating from 1850 to 1920, illustrating the rise of consumer culture and the birth of a professionalized advertising industry in the United States. Duke University LIbraries’ John W. Hartman Center For Sales, Advertising & Marketing History is the one-stop shop.


I recommend the section called “Emergence of Advertising in America” for your first course: A database of over 9,000 advertising items and publications (1850 – 1920), illustrating the rise of consumer culture, and the birth of a professionalized advertising industry. But there is lots more.

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#advertising #UnitEditions