2wice, the visual and performing arts journal, has always provided an alternative performance space for dance, one that had the advantage of being a permanent record of this most ephemeral art form. Now 2wice has published its first iPad app, “Merce Cunningham Event,” a tribute to the legendary choreographer (1919-2009) that combines live-action video, interviews and historic dance photography originally developed in collaboration with Cunningham. The app is available for free downloads through iTunes, building upon Cunningham’s lifelong interest in using technology to present dance in new ways.
Quick Link: Eddie Opara Profiled in Computer Arts
Robert A.M. Stern may be known as a pioneering postmodernist, but the term doesn’t begin to cover the stylistic versatility and wide-ranging output of his architectural practice. Among different audiences, Robert A.M. Stern Architects is known equally for everything from the design of houses and apartment buildings, to the design of office towers, academic buildings, and whole towns. Pentagram’s Michael Bierut has designed a new website for RAMSA that captures the firm’s expansive portfolio.
Bierut has a longstanding relationship with Stern, having designed a series of five monographs on the architect’s work, beginning with Robert A.M. Stern Buildings in 1996, followed by Houses (1997), Houses and Gardens (2005), Buildings and Towns (2007), and On Campus (2010). The distinctive design of the books reflects Stern’s own architectural approach—the contemporary interpretation of classical forms in a confident, even monumental form. Bierut has also designed two books of architectural writing by Stern, The Philip Johnson Tapes and Architecture on the Edge of Postmodernism.
After a decade as a partner, Lisa Strausfeld is leaving Pentagram to embark on a new phase of her career as an entrepreneur of information-based projects.
Strausfeld’s first venture is Major League Politics, an online startup with the goal of making government activity as engaging and addictive as sports. The project is one that Strausfeld has been thinking about for years.
“Thanks to the Open Government Directive, today we have unprecedented access to government data,” says Strausfeld. “That, combined with a rising literacy and interest in information visualization and an increased urgency for public engagement with government over the past few years has motivated me to finally make this vision of what I call ‘civic entertainment’ a reality.”
Every designer or design firm faces the challenge of how best to show their portfolio online. Which projects make the cut? How many images? What do potential clients want to see? For our new site, launched last week, we’ve taken the maximal approach, creating an image-driven, easily navigable collection of hundreds of our projects that will continue to grow as we finish new work. The site allows users to view multiple projects at once and take a closer look at portfolios of each project.
This week Pentagram’s newest partner, Eddie Opara, officially joined our New York office. Eddie is a multi-faceted designer whose work encompasses brand identity, publications, environments, interactive installations, websites, user interfaces and software, with many of his projects ranging across multiple media. He has developed numerous applications including the MiG, an innovative content and asset management system for off and online applications that is currently in use by various clientele.
Eddie brings with him the team from Map, the studio he founded in 2005: Brankica Harvey, senior designer; Raed Atoui, software developer; and Frank LaRocca, designer.
Eddie’s wide-ranging practice complements Pentagram’s multi-disciplinary approach. “Bringing a diversity of design skills laced with innovation to Pentagram is paramount,” says Eddie. “I strive to conceive and build compelling work through my love of strategy, design and technology.”
Paula Scher says: “Eddie represents the new generation of graphic designers for whom all forms of media and all dimensions of design are not separated from the initial concept but are an integral part of the total thought.”
On the occasion of his joining, Eddie and his team have developed a new Pentagram app for the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad that showcases his portfolio. Download it here. Look for future updates of the app featuring more work from our studio.
Following the launch of the Fortuny Collezione 2010, the latest collection of fabrics from the high-end Italian textile manufacturer, Luke Hayman and his team designed a printed catalog and… an iPhone application. The app is a striking contrast, a place where hand-crafted tradition and modern convenience merge; where a touch screen interface navigates the catalogue of a company with a rich legacy spanning more than a century. This fusion is particularly fitting for Fortuny, whose company founder, Mariano Fortuny, “Magician of Venice,” was an inventor always interested in employing new technology. Were he alive today, Fortuny would no doubt be delighted to see his fabrics scroll across the screen of an iPhone.
Our collaboration with Litl on the graphic design and user interface for its Litl webbook has received two honors in the 2010 International Design Excellence Awards. The awards are presented by the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) and sponsored by Fast Company, Dow Corning and The Henry Ford.
The Litl webbook packaging, designed by Litl with Abbott Miller, received a Gold in the Packaging & Graphics category, while the Litl OS won a Bronze in the Interactive Product Experiences category. Lisa Strausfeld and her team worked with Litl and Cooper on the design of the graphical user interface for the webbook OS.
Miller designed the brand identity for Litl. The webbook packaging is simple, straightforward and designed to appeal to a wide range of ages, embodying Litl’s mission as technology for everyone. The entire package is made from recyclable paper with no plastics or foams used, and the packaging doubles as its own shipping box.
“The Litl webbook is for families who aren’t necessarily tech savvy, and the wit and charm of the brand language translated in how the packaging was presented and unfolded,” commented IDEA juror Fumi Watanabe, creative director of merchandising at Starbucks. “The smart use of corrugated box structure, which made the packaging look thoughtful and giftable, also functioned to protect the product. Attention to details and emotional connection granted this packaging the design excellence.”
The Litl webbook itself, designed by Litl with Fuseproject, won a Bronze in the Computer Equipment category.
Design for a Living World, the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum exhibition designed and co-curated by Abbott Miller, was a Finalist in the Environments category.