Posts Tagged ‘New York’

transit map abstraction

June 3, 2009

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Tokyo Rail Map Poster and Calendar, zero per zero, 2008. Click for larger version.

I got really excited about this map of Tokyo’s complex rail system by Korean designers zero per zero today. It establishes a new abstraction vocabulary (arcs) for railway maps, which since Harry Beck’s 1933 Tube map (more on which below) have tended to use variations on his circuit-boardy angle system. And it uses chocolate brown, which I hope against hope will never go out of style again. And it has an underlying 12×31 grid and comes packaged with post-it notes sized to the grid squares: that’s right; you can use the thing as a calendar! It’s available straight from Korea hereSan Francisco friends give me a shout if you want something, we’ll combine shipping! along with smaller folding versions with great info backs. And New York, Osaka and Seoul editions.

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A little discussion of some more great rail maps featuring Messrs Beck, Vignelli, Hertz, Jabbour and Good Magazine after the jump.

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Jenny Holzer: PROTECT PROTECT

May 15, 2009

We went to a number of museums on our trip, but hands-down the most interesting exhibition we saw was Jenny Holzer‘s Protect Protect.

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Jenny Holzer, “MONUMENT”, 2008.

Texts: “Truisms”, 1977-79; “Inflammatory Essays”, 1979-82. © 2009 Jenny Holzer, member Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY. Photo: Vassilij Gureev. Collection of the artist; courtesy Monika Sprüth Philomene Magers, Berlin and London; and Diehl + Gallery One, Moscow

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Jenny Holzer, “For Chicago”, 2008.

Texts: “Truisms”, 1977-79; “Inflammatory Essays”, 1979-82; “Living”, 1980-82; “Survival”, 1983-85; “Under a Rock”, 1986; “Laments”, 1989; “Mother and Child”, 1990; “War”, 1992; “Lustmord”, 1993-95; “Erlauf”, 1995; “Arno”, 1996; “Blue”, 1998; and “Oh”, 2001. © 2009 Jenny Holzer, member Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY. Photo: Attilio Maranzano. Collection Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, commissioned through the generosity of the Edlis/Neeson Art Acquisition Fund

The show includes a variety of media, not only the LED signs that Holzer is best known for (shown above, but, as you might expect, the pictures can’t begin to do them justice), but also a series called Redaction Paintings which reproduce government documents about torture at large scale. The show is incredibly affecting; the matter-of-fact tone of the transcripts of marines discussing a war we are still engaged in can be a little hard to stomach, but are very important to read.

Here is an excerpt from The Whitney’s text about the show:

The works in this exhibition feature selections of Holzer’s writings from 1977 to 2001, as well as declassified pages from U.S. government documents she has used as source material since 2004. The exhibition’s subtitle PROTECT PROTECT derives from texts detailing plans for the Iraq war, yet it also relates to the problematic power of personal desire, as encapsulated in one of Holzer’s best-known statements: PROTECT ME FROM WHAT I WANT.

Whether she is using her own idiomatic texts, borrowing the words of international poets, or citing formerly classified materials containing policy debates, battle plans, and testimonies of American soldiers and detainees in U.S. custody, Holzer works between the public and private, the body politic and the body, the universal and the particular. Always timely, she provides a range of opinions, attitudes, and voices in works infused with formal beauty, sensitivity, and power.

Holzer is a favorite of ours from way back. She appeals to our love of type and also a social consciousness in artwork that is rare. From her Truisms, which were like incredible bursts of keen observation executed in a variety of media, through Lustmord, which dealt rather chillingly with text from the abusers and the abused (sometimes cut into skin or tagged onto bones) to this use of declassified torture documents displayed large or on flashing LEDs, she has consistently made thought-provoking use of texts.

To read more about the show, click here. Protect Protect is on view at the Whitney until May 31st.

Kiosk

March 19, 2009

kiosk

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I would really like to take a trip to Kiosk. We tried to go the last time we were in NY, but sadly, it was closed. They sell an amazing selection of everyday objects that they collect during their travels. Their current selections are items from America, but on the website you can still find some of the items from past collections.