Monday, August 4, 2008

Rethinking Libraries

For her senior thesis project, Valerie Madill reconsidered how design could make using the library more engaging and easier. She used half-wrap labels that would unify a particular subject by color as well as provide a consistent place for relevant information about each book. The result is a more sensual, desirable library experience that could draw more people to libraries and make find material more intuitive.

As library geeks, this is the kind of design and creative thinking that makes P+P giddy.


Bill Drew said...

I was thinking when I first saw this how stupid it looked. Maybe its because I could not separate out the different colors. I still think it is idiotic in many ways but could be improved upon by some one who understands color perception.

Ryan Deschamps said...
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Ryan Deschamps said...

I'm with Bill. Are you serious about this? I mean is it really good design composition to take a jumbled mess and turn it into a jumbled mess with pastel colors draped over it, obscuring titles and generally imposing a kind of fascist, nonsensical order on one of the great symbols of diversity and cosmopolitanism in our world?

Hey, I understand that [many] libraries have a lot of work to do to make their spaces more inviting. But anyone with library experience would know: 1) a solid proportion of men are colour blind 2) obscuring title is a quick way to tick people off 3) this is just a more obnoxious way to do perform the usual dots + call number that libraries already do. 4) what is all that paper going to look like after these books have been circulated a couple of times (especially after a good downpour).

Leah said...

It funny. Someone says they think it looks stupid but I thought, "wow that's kind of pretty". Ha!

ana said...

I think what I liked best was that this was a concept for replacing the two, three and sometimes four different stickers that libraries attach to books. There's one on the spine with the Dewey number, one on the back or front with a bar code and then often other stickers to indicate which library and/or branch holds the book. The label system was an effort to create one wrap that while it may obscure part of the existing title would provide one place to look for the Dewey number and title as well as providing space on both the front and back of the wrap to include a multitude of other information which would be particularly handy for non-fiction though a central place for a synopsis on fiction books would also be useful. First book in a series, etc.

Clearly, though, the issue of color-blindness would need to be considered.

Thanks for all the great comments!