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Above: Chanel shop, London, 2009.
Below: Stepanova's Constructivist dress, 1924.

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The fact is that the world is divided between users of the Macintosh 
computer and users of MS-DOS compatible computers. I am firmly of the 
opinion that the Macintosh is Catholic and that DOS is Protestant. 
Indeed, the Macintosh is counter-reformist and has been influenced by 
the ratio studiorum of the Jesuits. It is cheerful, friendly, 
conciliatory; it tells the faithful how they must proceed step by step 
to reach -- if not the kingdom of Heaven -- the moment in which their 
document is printed. It is catechistic: The essence of revelation is 
dealt with via simple formulae and sumptuous icons. 

Everyone has a right to salvation.
Umberto Eco
Mac History
Image held here 

“So thin and light it’s a revolution!”

I'm split about this new iPad thing, or to be more accurate, it's naming 
and the attendant fuss. 

Yes, it sounds really like the name of a femine hygiene product 
(Mac's iPad, Mac's iPad, Mac's iPad, Maxipad, Maxipad, Maxipad). I think 
all the period jokes are hilarious, and it's pretty rare that period 
jokes are so widespread in media and everyday conversation. 
Hurrah for subversive women's humour! (They do seem to throw up 
certain confusion and disgust/ squeamishness in male commenters, for 
example in this CNN news item). 

There are other problems with the name too, like the fact it will surely 
be difficult to distinguish between 'iPad' and 'iPod' in certain accents; 
they sound so similar it's bound to cause confusion. But I can see why 
it wasn't called iTablet or whatever as you can't actually draw on it 
(or run one than one app at a time but that's a whole other story).
So, is it really true that no women work in Macintosh? That no one would 
have seen all this coming? It's really difficult to believe this couldn't 
have been foreseen by someone. Or does Macintosh think of women as outside 
their target market?

In the promotional video, all of the developers, marketers, and managers 
are male. The hands that type, tap, and generally caress the beautiful 
screen, and the lap that the iPad rests on are male too. In the frankly 
fantastic series of TV adverts by TWBA in the Get a Mac campaign, PC and 
Mac were both male characters (the whole campaign is viewable on Adfreak). 
Women do occasionally appear: as a marketer for PC; as a Japanese digital 
camera; a psychoanalyst; a squad of cheerleaders; a yoga instructor. 
In October 2006, Gisele Bunchen appears as a home movie created on 
Mac's iMovie, in comparison to PC's 'work in progress' - a man dressed in 
a similar dress and a poor blonde wig. (This is the kind of hyper 
stylishness and body fascism that I, maybe unfairly, associate with the 
Mac cult. The undertone of gender discrimination was new to me). 
Above is an image from the original 1984 Macintosh instruction manual 
that featured no women at all, or anyone other than white men for that 
matter.

So, I am undecided. Mac has either been extremely stupid, or extremely 
clever. As one commenter on Jezebel put it, "I think Apple is fucking 
with us to get more women engaged in the launch of its new product. 
It worked."

Exhibit A: held here
If I order this, will my boyfriend and I have to worry if it comes late? 
If me and my friends all buy one, will they sync up? Jezebel
Exhibit B: Apple instruction manual for the original 128k Macintosh, 
released in 1984, held here
"with the exception of Chapter 5, every photo shows a preppy white male 
using the computer. Women and people of color need not apply! (The dude 
in Chapter 4 even has a *sweater* around his shoulders!!!)..." 
blogged here

Exhibit C: How to Dress Like a Mac - Justin Long in the PC/ Mac TV 
adverts, 2006-9 - held here 
(the blogger notes that he 'doesn't know anything about women's 
clothes... but it seems Macintosh don't either').

And just to provide an alternative image of women and technology, 
below is Exhibit D: Part of the cowling for one of the motors for a 
B-25 bomber is assembled in California, 1942. 
Photo by Alfred T. Palmer for the FSA, held by the Library of Congress.

the first time as tragedy, the second time as farce.”

Paulette Phillips at NCAD Gallery, 100 Thomas Street, Dublin
29 January – 6 March
Inspired by the poetically tragic aura that surrounds E 1027, a villa on the Cote d’ Azur built by architect and designer Eileen Gray for her lover Jean Badovici in 1929. Having built the house as a romantic getaway, Gray eventually walked away from her labor of love. For a period of time it then became known as Le Corbusier’s house, while Gray languished in obscurity.
Above: Touché
Magnetized books, nickel plated bronze structure
9.25″ x 9.25″ x 3.5″
“Touché traps two magnetized books, Le Corbusier’s The Poetics of Metaphor with Gray’s monograph Eileen Gray within a cage. One book hovers over the other repelled by its negative energy field.”
Artist website
Image held here

societe realiste, hexatopia, 2009Société Réaliste: Hexatopia, betűkészlet, 2009

TYPOPASS-CRITICAL DESIGN AND CONCEPTUAL TYPOGRAPHY at Platán Gallery, Budapest. Organized by Dorottya Gallery and tranzit. hu with the collaboration of the Polish Institute.

How does critical design emerge, the attempt to counter consumer culture with a social consciousness with the intention not only to serve customers but also to shape visual culture, even the whole of culture and society? The project focuses on typography, a visual language that can be interpreted both in the field of art and design. The exhibition presents the historical and contemporary projects and publications from the boundary of design and the visual arts in three groups: Typographic Utopias, Anti- and Parallel Design, Subversive Design.

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‘So it’ll be kind of modern-y then.

Oh well, it’ll be nice all the same.’

(in discussion with bean-an-tí about the new carpet design).

final-carpet-design-colour-correct2

Contrasting ideas of value, time, energy and labour converge in artist Stephanie Syjuco’s Counterfeit Crochet Project:

In 2006 I created a website soliciting crocheters to join me in hand-counterfeiting designer handbags: Fendi, Gucci, Chanel, Prada, etc. Participants troll the internet and choose a design that they particularly covet, working off of low-resolution jpgs which they download. The final results may or may not bear resemblance to the originals, which is an interesting part of the “translation.”

crochet_nicole_dolce

The resulting counterfeits are both homages and lumpy mutations. Crochet is considered a lowly medium, and the limitations imposed by trying to create detail with yarn takes advantage of the individual maker’s ingenuity and problem-solving skills. I am also interested in how this project parallels and diverges from contemporary capitalist factory production and distribution channels.

As a collaboration it parallels the idea of “outsourcing” labor, but also adds a democratic and perhaps anarchic level of creativity–within the basic framework, participants have taken liberties with their translations, changing colors, adding materials (cardboard, hot glue, etc.) to suit their needs. Makers are encouraged to keep and wear their bags, in an attempt to insert strange variants into the stream of commerce and consumption. I ask for people to send me snapshots of their items to share with others.

This is an ongoing global project, with makers from all over the world. I am always seeking more collaborators, so please contact me to join up! In 2007 the project travelled to Manila, Beijing, and Istanbul for exhibitions and counterfeiting workshops.

Image: Nicole’s D&G Counterfeit

Patterns available include how to bootleg a Chanel purse; Creating Knockoff Logos; Creating the Gucci and Chanel Patterns. Also available is a useful list of ‘solidarity’ websites and links to useful tutorials.

Artist website here; project website here. This year she will exhibit at Pallas Contemporary Projects in Dublin, Ireland.

Amateur Hour is a showcase for exciting new learning, skills, entertainment and public actions. Submissions in any form welcome to selfinterestandsympathy [at] gmail [dot] com

from Newsgrist, via Crooked Timber

Back to the Futura by John Holbo on July 26, 2008

So, about that Obama-in-Berlin poster.

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