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8 Introduction
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Alphen aan den Rijn, The Netherlands
Aachen, Germany
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Ancona, Italy
Angers, France
Arendal, Norway
Arnhem, The Netherlands
Athens, Greece
Auckland, New Zealand
Augsburg, Germany
Baboul, Niger
Baoding, China
Barcelona, Spain
Barendrecht, The Netherlands
Barranquilla, Colombia
Bath, UK
Baton Rouge (La.), USA
Beijing, China
Beirut, Lebanon
Belgrade, Serbia
Belo Horizonte, Brazil
Bergen op Zoom, The Netherlands
Bergen, Germany
Bergen, Norway
Berlin, Germany
Besançon, France
Blerick, The Netherlands
Bloomfi eld Hills (Mich.), USA
Bogotá, Colombia
Boston, USA
Boulogne-Billancourt, France
Bowen Island, Canada
Breda, The Netherlands
Bregenz, Austria
Mapping Contemporary Graphic Design
“Finally the journey leads to the city of Tamara. One enters the city
through streets which are fi lled with insignia protruding from the walls.
The eye only sees images of things which mean other things… Your
gaze scans the streets as though they were written pages: the city says
everything that’s in your mind, it makes you repeat its message… What
the city is really like under this tight cover of signs, what it holds and
what it conceals is never unveiled as you leave Tamara without having
found out…
Italo Calvino. Invisible Cities.
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Bremen, Germany
Breslau, Poland
Brighton, UK
Brisbane, Australia
Bristol, UK
Brno, Czech Republic
Bucaramanga, Colombia
Bucharest, Romania
Budapest, Hungary
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Campobasso, Italy
Cape Town, South Africa
Caracas, Venezuela
Chengdu, China
Chicago, USA
Ciudad Quezón, Philippines
Clermont-Ferrand, France
Cologne, Germany
Columbus (Ohio), USA
Copenhagen, Denmark
Culebra, Puerto Rico
Curitiba, Brazil
Denpasar, Indonesia
Dijon, France
Dortmund, Germany
Drammen, Norway
Dubrovnik, Croatia
Duisburg, Germany
Durban, South Africa
Düsseldorf, Germany
Eagle Rock (Calif.), USA
Edam-Volendam, the Netherlands
Edinburgh, Scotland
Edmonta, Canada
An atlas is traditionally a book of maps – cartography. It is a system of
projections that reinterprets a space and provides possible routes. This
Atlas of Graphic Design is an invitation to travel, to explore the territory
of current graphic design by way of a selection of outstanding graphic
work carried out over the last decade around the world. It is a compilation
which covers the diversity of areas apparent today in the fi eld of graphic
design – taking the town, production, and consumption as a starting
point. It is a panoramic vision which invites us to consider the possible
relations that exist between design and the context in which it has been
produced.
In the fi rst decade of the twenty-fi rst century we are witnessing how
cities are re-establishing themselves as centers of power. In a sort of
medieval – course and recourse – turn, we can see how the idea of the
“city” is reaffi rmed above that of nation-state and thus retakes its former
status of world-city, of cosmogony, of a center which generates signs and
feelings. The contemporary city unfurls itself before us like a book, a
space full of information and codes whose interpretation determines our
comprehension of reality and which acquires form, generally, as a result
of graphic design.
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