Graphic Design and Reading

Posted in Uncategorized by Lina A.Hadi on February 24, 2011

‘Could I be a dead reader… while still being a live designer? I guess so, but what kind of professional life would this be? Little growth, a few paltry connections buzzing about in my brain, limited input to stimulate the dearth of output – not an appealing proposition…’



‘ The Met is a wonderful and yet difficult place to bring young kids. There’s so much to see, and one young man I saw wante to tug his parents around to every last thing that caught his eye. His annoyed mother finally said, ” We only have time to see the important things.”

Suddenly I remembered all the “important” books I was told to read as a kid. Why? Because they’re important, damn it. I remembered the school field trips to supposedly important places or important exhibitions. I felt privileged, but I didnt understand why. It was a neat package again, one as easy to accept as any other. In any case, my teachers provided guidance but little encouragement to think for one’s self.

What disturbed me about the exchange I overheard between the parent and child was theat this boy’s curiosity was trampled. He was clearly born with the desire to seek information out and make it his own. In return he was offered a McArt lesson. Importance, he may later realize, is culturally understood and artificially constructed, a McIdeology.

I think its fair to say we all want to be genuine, and some of us go to great lengths to  prove our uniqueness. It stands to reason then that intellectual growth and critical-thinking skills are valuable assets to the designers in terms of personal identity and profeesional performance. But how much of our decision making is based on a unique sense of self– a critical ideological base from which to work – instead of from the many McIdeologies pervasive in society? as my memory reveals, we’re taught from an early age to be McThinkers, McViewers, and even McReaders.’

Excerpts from Two Days in Limbo, by Micheal Shmidt, from Graphic Design and Reading: Explorations of an Uneasy Relationship.


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