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Tony Brook, Spin & Unit Editions

Tony Brook, Spin & Unit Editions

Tony Brook has had a huge influence on contemporary graphic design through his design practice and, latterly, his publishing projects. He launched Spin studio with his wife Patricia Finegan in 1992, and continues to work for a broad range of clients. In 2009 he and design/writer Adrian Shaughnessy published ‘Studio Culture’, the first product of a new imprint, Unit Editions, that has since published a series of beautifully produced, essential books about contemporary graphics and graphic designers.


We asked Tony to share three magazines from his collection – a new issue, an old issue and a third item, a detail that has caught his eye recently.


A new issue: IDEA magazine
Idea magazine has been consistently of interest over the years, from the content it features to the paper stocks and print techniques it employs. It isn’t cheap but it is always great value. The sheer range of content on display means that there is always something new to enjoy or be challenged by.

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The latest issue for example has features on Juzo Itami a Japanese actor, screenwriter and film director designed by London based studio Åbäke, our contribution about iconic American designer Lance Wyman (shown) and an insert featuring strange, moody imagery by Fumio Tachibana.

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An old issue: Octavo
Octavo was a groundbreaking magazine in its day, and has certainly stood the test of time. Beautifully designed, curated and published by UK based studio 8V0, it reflects the studios interests and concerns and has, rightfully, achieved legendary status amongst graphic designers. The production values are off the scale, it was a labour of love and it shows.


And another thing… Graphic Design
A magazine that is relatively new to me, long after its demise, another exotic offering from Japan. Graphic Design featured the best of Japanese and world design from 1959 until its demise in 1986.
The thing that strikes me most about this magazine, aside from the sheer quality of work featured, is the innovative use of paper stocks, it is a real delight to handle.
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