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Immutable

Designing History

Onomatopee 199

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Onomatopee 199, Chris Lee, 2022

Immutable

Designing History

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Immutable: Designing History explores the banal genre of the document and its entanglement with statecraft and colonial(ism/ity). This is framed as a ~5,000 year chronology, imbricating the developments of money and writing — from Mesopotamian clay tablets to distributed ledgers, like the blockchain. Immutability figures as a design imperative and hermeneutic for considering a variety of techniques (material, technological, administrative, etc.) of securitization against the entropy of a document’s movement through space/time, and the political.
This project is driven by a contrast: design educators tend to teach forms like logos, books, websites, etc., but not passports, money, property deeds, etc., in spite of these being, I contend, design’s most profoundly consequential forms.
As an alternative historiography, “Immutable” gestures both towards anthropologist Laura Nader’s call to “study up” (on those in power), and the radical educator Paolo Freire’s recognition of the “limit situation” as a generative condition for emancipatory praxis. The book’s aim is to orient graphic design towards the vocation of imagining, naming, and remembering beyond the horizons of its role as a managerial, administrative, and colonial instrument that imposes a rationality of vision and accountability upon what is knowable, thinkable and sayable.
Bio
Chris Lee is a graphic designer and educator based in Buffalo and Brooklyn, NY. He is a graduate of OCADU and the Sandberg Instituut. His research/studio practice explores graphic design’s entanglement with power, standards, and the document. Chris is an Assistant Professor in the Undergraduate Communications Design Department at the Pratt Institute.
Type
Softcover
Dimensions
127mm x 197mm; 5” x 7.75” (portrait)
Pages
126
ISBN
978-94-93148-42-0
Editor
Benjamin Tiven
Author
Chris Lee
Graphic
Chris Lee
Language
English
Release date
20221116
Binding
Swiss Binding
Paper
Munken Kristall Rough 100
Edition
1200
Color
2/2 PMS
Printer
Die Keuze
Font
Burgess Pro, National
Image specs
50 duotone images
Onomatopee project manager
Freek Lomme and Dymfy van Meel
Copy editor
Rachel Valinksky
more specs

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