Pop: How Graphic Design Shapes Popular Culture

Front Cover
Allworth Communications, 2010 - Art - 295 pages
2 Reviews
“Pop culture is often maligned as fleeting, but history shows that sometimes what is pop in one culture has time-honored resonance in later ones. This book is an attempt to show that pop culture, especially as seen through the lenses of design, illustration, satiric and political art (and other things), is integral to a broader understanding of who we are and where we are going.”—Steven Heller, from the Introduction

How do popular culture and graphic design influence one another? What are the goals of design? Are they to sell? To package? To entertain? The answers to these questions are complicated and are intimately tied to the effect design has on the overall culture. POP is the first book to analyze the role of graphic design in the broader culture, as well as the impact of design on other art and entertainment forms, from album covers to baseball stadiums. Author Steven Heller addresses such subjects as:

--pop icons
--viral and guerilla advertising
--political satire
--the history of Interview, Monocle, Mad, and other magazines
--illusionism and three-dimensional design
--art for art's sake
--design vs. decoration
--the return of hand lettering
--art for the masses


POP spans over 150 years during which popular culture has influenced mass perception and behavior. Illustrated by more than fifty images, POP is sure to inspire both aspiring and experienced designers.

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Review: POP: How Graphic Design Shapes Popular Culture

User Review  - Susie - Goodreads

I picked up this book because I was interested in the history of graphic design and its impact on pop culture. Unfortunately, since I'm not trained as a graphic designer, I didn't understand much of ... Read full review

About the author (2010)

Steven Heller is co-chair of the MFA Design: Designer as Author+Entrepreneur program at New York's School of Visual Arts. He is the author, editor and co-editor of more than one hundred books on design and popular culture.

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