The Zen Calligraphy of Thich Nhat Hanh

‘In my calligraphy there is ink, tea, breathing, mindfulness, and concentration,’ observes Thich Nhat Hanh. ‘Writing calligraphy is a practice of meditation. I write the words or sentences that can remind people about the practice,’ notes the prolific author, poet, teacher, scholar, peace activist, Buddhist monk and calligrapher. Martin Luther King Jr. called him ‘an apostle of peace and non-violence’ when nominating him for the Nobel... Read More

Book review: Lucy Williams

Lucy Williams takes mid-twentieth-century Modernist architecture as her inspiration to create softly shaded, intricate collages. Working with mixed media, the artist turns these often cold and brutal constructions into warm, human spaces. Even though they remain unoccupied, we can almost feel the presence of people in these diverse settings that include housing projects, government buildings, department stores and swimming pools. ‘I am interested... Read More

100 Ways to Create a Great Ad…

… and a 100 Ideas That Changed the Web Two new books landed on our doorstep the other day: 100 Ways to Create a Great Ad and 100 Ideas that Changed the Web. As their names suggest, they act as introductions as well as excellent reference books for creatives involved in these areas. As we all know, a great ad – well in print format anyway – is basically the marriage of clever copywriting with strong visuals. Here author, Tim Collins,... Read More

Book review: Gerhard Richter November

Sometimes it is the simple incidents that can lead to some intriguing works of art. In the case of November, Gerhard Richter became fascinated with the dripping patterns his black Edding marker-pen ink made on paper whilst decanting it in 2008. Using benzene, acetone and black tushe, the German artist set about experimenting with the process – thinning the materials and manipulating the patterns and colours. The result is the November series... Read More

Book review: The Colour Revolution

Fashion helps shape our visual landscape and, well, adds a little fun to our lives. However, behind what may seem like a frivolous world are countless brains deciding on what we wear and what colour these garments should be made available in. The colour of the season isn’t just some fluke or flippant decision made by the editor of Vogue but the work of colour specialists who through history have directed trends based on economic forces and shifting... Read More

Book review: London Portrait of the City

‘When a man is tired of London,’ English author Samuel Johnson famously said in 1777, ‘he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.’ And so begins London Portrait of the City preparing the reader for what is a sensory feast celebrating this city. It is easy to mock London. This giant metropolis can seem unruly at times – the transport system is little shaky, the people a little unfriendly and the weather a little... Read More

Book review: Information Graphics

TASCHEN creates visually engaging books. The publisher excels at binding together paper that demonstrated the digital age should never eliminate the desire for the thoughtfully designed and engagingly written physical book. Information Graphics does just this. Its analysis of graphic design past and present together with its rich selection of images provide a wonderful framework for this visual world that is forever evolving but remains as poignant... Read More

Book: Project Japan, Metabolism Talks

Japanese minimalist architecture has had a profound impact on European building design, particularly private housing. Yet there is a complex ideology coming out of a more contemporary Japan that has been one of the most influential, yet elusive, movements in modern architecture. Japanese Metabolism is possibly the first non-western avant-garde. This spirited movement was pioneered by a small group of young architects in the late 1950s whose utopian... Read More

Book review: Deborah Turbeville

Deborah Turbeville has for many years been a great source of inspiration for my work and collections.  Our design studio walls at GharaniStrok were plastered with inspirational images of which Turbeville held a strong presence. They included The Bathhouse (1975) – one of my favourites – as well as Nova (Clevedon, London 1973) and Charlotte Gainsbourg, shot in an image reminiscent of a turn of the century Chaplinesque heroine. #gallery-9... Read More

Book review: Redesigning Leadership

Redesigning Leadership is a gem of a book, and like a genuine gem is compact, short, succinct and a pleasure to read. Since it starts with a haiku I will attempt to sum up the book with my own feeble effort. Wisdom in bursts Succinct, real, obvious As all insights should Or as author John Maeda liked to communicate with his team on twitter @mohsenmedic.. according to media savvy Maeda it is best to lead by listening hard  preferably face-to-face... Read More

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