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"The process is the same in every case: culling through a collection of books, pulling particular titles, and eventually grouping the books into clusters so that the titles can be read in sequence, from top to bottom. The final results are shown either as photographs of the book clusters or as the actual stacks themselves, shown on the shelves of the library they were drawn from." A description of Nina Katchadourian’s great series “Sorted Books.” You might want to start here (via Jason Santa Maria).

147

The International Herald Tribune has a nice slide show of some of Irma Boom’s beautiful book designs. I’m a huge fan. More about Boom here, and a great interview with Boom by Peter Bilak here.

144

AceJet170 shares his extensive and beautiful collection of Penguin paperbacks on Flickr. More on his own blog.

132

Let me join the chorus of supporters: Miranda July’s new website is refreshingly homemade, poetically funny, and totally brilliant.

127

The engrossing WorldCat, “the world’s largest network of library content and services. WorldCat libraries are dedicated to providing access to their resources on the Web, where most people start their search for information.” It’s a card catalog of card catalogs with all the simplicity of Google. And it’s incredibly useful: after searching a book, you can find out which library has it closest to your house, and how to cite it in APA, Chicago, Harvard, MLA, and Turabian formats. WorldCat was created by the Online Computer Library Center, or OCLC, and they’ve already been data-mining WorldCat with some pretty interesting results.

123

Kevin Kelly on two self-publishing services, Blurb and Lulu. I haven’t tried these sites yet, but I can definitely recommend Fastback Creative Books.

117

Some new examples of arranging books by color popped up on Apartment Therapy the other day. An essay I wrote on this method of arrangement for Design Observer is here.

112

Khoi Vinh pointed me to this You Tube video for the song "Quicksand Under Carpet" by the band New Radiant Storm King. Reminds me of one of my favorite book designs by the fantastic designer Thomas Buxò.

99

David Means is one of my favorite writers, and a modern master of the short story. "Assorted Fire Events" is his best book to date, though I am sure there are many more to come. When the book came out, he did an interview with Powell’s.com where he observed, “All really good short stories are open-ended. The bad short stories are the ones that resolve and wind up in a nice neat conclusion. You don’t have room in a short story to close things down. You just have room to give a narrative push and let the reader move forward with whatever happens.”

In the Library

Library Assignment

Above: Talon Gustafson’s response to the assignment involved picking books whose titles could be used for making a concrete or Dadaist poem. Spread from “This Is Not a Manifesto.”

Pick 12 books from the library by intuition and write an essay which relates them.

This assignment is from the class Graphic Design & Critical Thinking.