University of Hawaii at Manoa, USA  
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Project. Site-seeing: Reading the Urban Landscape

Purpose. To document, study and interpret typography in the landscape, particularly as such typography signifies the unique identity of an urban ‘site’. To understand the book as a typographic ‘site’ in its own right. To imagine an exhibitionary space as its own landscape—one that incorporates specific readings and, in this case, the merger of inside and outside, landscape and its representation in typographic/symbolic form.

Assignment. Senior students are assigned sites in the Honolulu area. These sites encompass a range of areas including Chinatown, Manoa (a residential district), Mapunapuna (an industrial park), etc. Students are then asked to design two books that consider the site as both a “place” and a “space” (as defined by the French literary theorist, Michel de Certeau, in the quotes below). The books work in tandem and students are responsible for the actual content of the text as well as any images. After the books are designed, the students then work together to design a ‘map’ of the combined sites in a small student gallery. The map must consider the gallery space in a unique way and include all the books in the final installation. Ultimately the books and the cartographic installation work together and present the enveloping idea of the site (as a place) and the daily operations that activate and alter the site (as a space).

“A place (lieu) is the order (of whatever kind) in accord with which elements are distributed in relationships of coexistence. It thus excludes the possibility of two thing being in the same location (place). The law of the ‘proper’ rules in the place: the elements taken into consideration are beside one another, each situated in its own ‘proper’ and distinct location, a location it defines. A place is thus an instantaneous configuration of positions. It implies an indication of stability.” -Michel de Certeau

“A space exist when one takes into consideration vectors of direction, velocities, and time variables. Thus space is composed of intersections of mobile elements. It is in a sense actuated by the ensemble of movements deployed within it. Space occurs as the effect produced by the operations that orient it, situate it, temporalize it, and make it function in a polyvalent unity of conflictual programs or contractual proximities. On this view, in the relation to place, space is like the word when it is spoken, that is, when it is caught in the ambiguity of an actualization, transformed into a term dependent upon many different conventions, situated as the act of a present (or of a time), and modified by the transformations caused by successive contexts. In contradistinction to the place, it has thus none of the univocity or stability of a ‘proper.’” -Michel de Certeau


Format. Part 1. Two books, 12 x 15.25
Part 2. Exhibition design in a small student gallery.

Time. Sixteen weeks

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Anne Bush is Professor and Chair of Design in the Department of Art and Art History at the University of Hawai`i. Her work includes writing, graphic design, and site-specific installations. Her essays on graphic design and graphic design history have been published by Émigré, Visible Language, Design Issues, ZED, Visual Communication, The American Center for Design Journal, Tipografica and the American Institute of Graphic Arts Journal. They have also been published in the books Citizen Designer and Regarding Romantic Rome, among others. Her design and installation work have been recognized by I.D. Magazine, the American Institute of Graphic Arts, Print magazine, The American Center for Design, the New York Art Director’s Club and Eye magazine. The essay, “System, Suspension, Seduction: Anne Bush’s Critical Design Practice” by John Zuern was published in 2006 in the journal Visible Language.

Anne lectures at various institutions and from 1998 until 2005 was a Visiting Professor in the Graduate Program at the Universidad de las Americas in Puebla, Mexico. She has been a Visiting Artist/Scholar at the American Academy in Rome, a Fellow at the Camargo Foundation in Cassis, France and the recipient of numerous grants and awards including a research grant from the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, the Oxford University/Isaiah Berlin Fund Bursary, and the 2005 Bursary Award from the Design History Society, UK. Anne received her M.F.A. in Graphic Design from Yale University in 1989 and is currently writing a book on the printed ephemera of Victorian travel at the University of Oxford where she is pursuing a Ph.D in the History of Art and Visual Culture.

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