Gift Guide: New & Recent Books
If you’re looking for holiday gift ideas, here are a few suggestions. We’ve compiled our favorite books into one giant list which include illustration and design titles from larger publishers, as well as privately pressed items.
Available at Kinokuniya
In the documentary and the book The Style of the Stedelijk filmmaker Lex Reitsma and design historian Frederike Huygen examine the long search for a new house style. The various participating designers and their proposals are presented, as well as the house style concept developed under current director Ann Goldstein by Mevis & Van Deursen, and the museum’s fascinating history and unique relationship with graphic design.
Ken Garland: Structure and Substance
Available at Unit Editions
Herb Lubalin: American Graphic Designer 1918—81
Pick up a copy at Unit Editions
Available as an E-Book at shapeofdesignbook.com
Design Research Unit: 1942-72
In the same way that the Helvetica font graphically defined the New York City subway system, the Design Research Unit visually branded the London we know today in everything from its street signs to such corporate identities as British Rail. Design Research Unit: 1942–72 details the history of the Unit and includes contemporary perspectives by artists, designers and critics.
Available at 50by70
Eames Beautiful: Beautiful Details by Eames Demetrios
Available at Amazon and you’re local book shop
The Book of Books: 500 Years of Graphic Innovation
Beginning in 1471 with an edition printed by the influential Nicolas Jenson in Venice and ending in 2010 with a stylish design by Irma Boom, this sumptuous collection tells the history of the printed book through milestone publications and little-known treasures.
British Aviation Posters
From Futurism and Modernism to Art Deco and Surrealism, aviation was from its earliest days inextricably linked with revolutionary new ways of seeing the world. Focusing on the golden age of British civil aviation, British Aviation Posters shows how art and design were applied with great creativity and style to develop and promote aviation in the UK and beyond.
No one captured the midcentury modernism of the Mad Men era better than Balthazar Korab. As one of the period’s most prolific and celebrated architecture photographers, Korab captured images as graceful and elegant as his subjects. His iconic photographs for master architects immortalized their finest works, while leaving his own indelible impact on twentieth century visual culture. In this illustrated biography, the first dedicated solely to his life and career, author John Comazzi traces Korab’s circuitous path to a career in photography.
The Dutch Photobook features selections from approximately one hundred historic, contemporary, and self-published photobook projects.
Elegantissima: The Design and Typography of Louise Fili
Little Book of Lettering by Emily Gregory
Typography is always one of the designer’s first considerations when it comes to making a statement, and in recent years the world of lettering and type has exploded in an unprecedented wave of creative discovery. Contemporary artists, typesetters, and designers of all kinds are exploring new horizons in illustrated and hand-drawn lettering, digitally rendered lettering, and 3D lettering. This collection—large in scope but petite in size—surveys the recent lettering renaissance, showcasing a diverse range of talent in gorgeous, eye-catching examples and profiling today’s innovators.
Letman: The Artwork and Calligraphy of Job Wouters by Letman
This book is the first monograph from Amsterdam-based illustrator Job Wouters, who works under the pseudonym Letman. In addition to commissioned designs for publications including New York Times Magazine, Playboy, It’s Nice That, and Creative Review and brands such as Audi, Heineken, Dries Van Noten, Tommy Hilfiger, Eastpak, and Universal, Letman also includes a compelling selection of his personal projects and sketches.
The Anatomy of Type (The Geometry of Type in the UK) is all about looking more closely at letters. Through visual diagrams and practical descriptions, you’ll learn how to distinguish between related typefaces and see how the attributes of letterforms (such as contrast, detail, and proportion) affect the mood, readability, and use of each typeface.
Available at Amazon or your local bookshop
Tout le monde connaît Roger Excoffon
Created for an exhibition at Musée de l’imprimerie in Lyon, this book gathers more than 100 documents previously unpublished.
Available at Editions Deux-Cent-Cinq
Sign Painters by Faythe Levine and Sam Macon
In 2010 filmmakers Faythe Levine, coauthor of Handmade Nation, and Sam Macon began documenting these dedicated practitioners, their time-honored methods, and their appreciation for quality and craftsmanship. Sign Painters, the first anecdotal history of the craft, features stories and photographs of more than two dozen sign painters working in cities throughout the United States.
Stark wie en Bar by Katrin Stangl
Available at Amazon
ir e vir by Isabel Minhos Martins
Available at Planeta Tangerina
The Curious Explorers Illustrated Pocket Companion to Exotic Animals
Available at Edition X
Black & White Illustrations by Raymond Biesinger
Available on Etsy
Alphasaurus and Other Prehistoric Types
Available at Amazon
Books! by Murray McCain & John Alcorn
Available at Topipittori
Ganesha’s Sweet Tooth
The bold, bright colors of India leap right off the page in this fresh and funny picture book adaptation of how Ganesha came to write the epic poem of Hindu literature, theMahabharata. Ganesha is just like any other kid, except that he has the head of an elephant and rides around on a magical mouse. And he loves sweets, especially the traditional dessert laddoo. But when Ganesha insists on biting into a super jumbo jawbreaker laddoo, his tusk breaks off! Ganesha is terribly upset, but with the help of the wise poet Vyasa, he learns that what seems broken can actually be quite useful after all.
Henri’s Walk to Paris
Bicycle (Leporello) by Ugo Gattoni
Inspired by the 2012 London Olympic Games, young artist Ugo Gattoni intricately illustrates a cycle race through the streets of London. From elite athletes to cycle couriers, commuters, bankers, delivery boys, mums with kids, youths on stolen mountain bikes to fashionistas and hipsters on fixed gear bikes – pretty soon you will realize this is no ordinary road race!
The Fir Tree by Sanna Annukka
Hans Christian Andersen’s tragic tale of naive greed and dissatisfaction is retold through the beautiful and intricate illustrations of Finnish illustrator Sanna Annukka
Little Big Books: Illustrations for Children’s Picture Books
Little Big Books showcases the best examples of illustration for children’s books and documents current trends in their design. Reflecting a broad range of styles, methods, and materials, the images and concepts featured here provide an insightful overview of the most important aesthetic developments over the last several years. An introductory text puts the current work into the historical context of classic illustrated books for children.
Space Race (Leporello) by Tom Clohosy Cole
Space Race covers the USSR’s early triumphs of space exploration on one side the USA’s race to the moon on the other, all in beautifully illustrated style. Space Race is not just a stunning work of art though, as it includes an illustrated fact sheet detailing important breakthroughs in space travel on both sides of the Iron Curtain between 1957 and 1975, making it a fantastic tool for educators as well as a fun way for young historians to explore a defining period of the 20th Century.
Sad Santa by Tad Carpenter
Matte Stephens Selected Works (Oeuvres choisies)
Available in the Round Robin shop.
The Where, the Why, and the How: 75 Artists Illustrate Wondrous Mysteries of Science
A science book like no other, The Where, the Why, and the How turns loose 75 of today’s hottest artists onto life’s vast questions, from how we got here to where we are going. Inside these pages some of the biggest (and smallest) mysteries of the natural world are explained in essays by real working scientists, which are then illustrated by artists given free rein to be as literal or as imaginative as they like.
Have other suggestions? Drop us a note in the comments.
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Featured Book: Matte Stephens: Selected Works.
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