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Michael Bierut
Essays | Biography | Interviews & Articles | 79 Short Essays on Design | Contact

Archive: January 2007


All That Jazz: Posters by Niklaus Troxler

Poster
Poster for Cecil Taylor in Concert, Niklaus Troxler, 1989

Niklaus Troxler is a graphic designer. Niklaus Troxler is a jazz fanatic. Nearly forty years ago, Troxler invited a jazz group to play in Willisau, the small Swiss farming town he calls home, and thus it began: Willisau became established as an unlikely destination for jazz musicians and their fans, and Troxler began to acquire a reputation as a designer to watch. Today, his work is exhibited, published, and collected all over the world, and Jazz Festival Willisau — which has hosted Keith Jarrett, Lester Bowie, Dewey Redman, McCoy Tyner, and the Kronos Quartet, among many others — is about to celebrate its 37th year...

READ MORE | COMMENTS (28)

Speech, Speech

Does this sound familiar?

Your client has a message to communicate: an argument, a sales pitch, a call to action. Your job is to give it form. You're an expert at this. You know how to take a complicated bunch of ideas and reduce them to their arresting, memorable, engaging essence...

READ MORE | COMMENTS (19)

The It Factor


Cover, Quintessence, designed by John Jay, photographs by Dan Kozan, 1983

Imagine your son waking up on Christmas morning and rushing to open his presents in breathless anticipation of getting a shiny new iPod, only to find out he's got a Zune, which is like coming second in chess.

When I read this on David Galbraith's blog a few weeks ago, I had a moment of deja vu. More than twenty years ago, I heard an author describing an identical experience, except it he was talking about a little boy who was hoping for a real baseball bat; his clueless parents got him a perfectly good non-Louisville Slugger instead.

You know it when you see it. There's the iPod, and there are all those other MP3 players; there's the Louisville Slugger, and there are all those other baseball bats...

READ MORE | COMMENTS (22)



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