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Elegantissima: The Design and Typography of Louise Fili Hardcover – March 4, 2015
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" When it comes to food, you probably don't know Louise Fili's name but you may very well recognize her work. If you've ever dined at The Mermaid Inn, Back Forty, or Artisanal in New York City, eaten Tate's Bake Shop's cookies, spread some of American Spoon's jam on bread, or poured a glass of Bartlett Winery's wild blueberry wine, you've seen Fili's designs... Graphic designers are sure to appreciate this book--not only for Fili's professional legacy but also for its historical point of view." -- Epicurious.com
"While this book is more monograph than how-to, it offers the reader a cogent reason for why the work is made, therefore it serves as an inspirational and aspirational guide." - Omnivoracious
"The 256-page monograph is a steal at $40 and a must for package designers and both print and digital typographers." -- InteriorDesign.com
"Sumptuous logos, books, menus, and packaging abound, but the unexpected treat comes in the form of case studies: sketches, inspirations and design process. Not to be missed." --Communication Arts
"Long known as something of a revolutionary in the field of book-jacket design, Fili took her distinctive and elegant old-world style to the food-packaging industry in 1989. There she brought a whole new level of sophistication to everything from candybar wrappers to wine bottles-and you can find many of them here." -- Entertainment Weekly
"Elegantissima is evidence of [Fili's] success. The monograph is filled with case studies, anecdotes, and luscious spreads from an extraordinary career's worth of design. Most of the book will make you hungry, or at least move up your plans to go to Europe. Bellissima!" -- Imprint
"Appropriately lavish and stunning, Elegantissima is the perfect showcase of Fili's intricate, arresting, and always elegant work." -- Brain Pickings
"An image-heavy book that will make type and design nerds drool." -- Bust magazine
About the Author
Louise Fili is director of Louise Fili Ltd, a New York-based design studio specializing in branding for food packaging and restaurants. Fili was art director of Pantheon Books for eleven years, where she designed close to 2000 book jackets. She is a member of the Art Directors Hall of Fame, and received the medal of lifetime achievement from the AIGA and the Type Directors Club.
Fili is the author of Elegantissima, Grafica della Strada, and Graphique de la Rue. She also co-authored and designed Italianissimo and The Cognoscenti's Guide to Florence. With her husband, the design historian Steven Heller, she is co-author of Italian Art Deco, British Modern, Dutch Moderne, Streamline, French Modern, Deco España, German Modern, Deco Type, Design Connoisseur, Counter Culture, Typology, Stylepedia, Euro Deco, Scripts, Shadow Type, Stencil Type, and Slab Serif Type. She has also designed Perfetto, Tutti Frutti, and Brillante pencils.
Top customer reviews
Layout is a bit wonky. Which is very weird, considering this book is about one of THE most famous and influential graphic designers. You know, layout.
But hey, if you are a fan, it still delivers some joy.
PS I am not a graphic designer per se. More a photographer, fine artist. But I taught graphic design in colleges, after my graphics and fine art education. I've been attracted to Louise Fili's book covers for a long time. My first purchase of anyh of her (and her huz) books. Of course I'd love to own them all!! A gal can dream, right!
I have several books by Steven Heller and Louise Fili and this husband / wife collaboration has produced some real treasures. I can only imagine what wonders are housed in their combined archives. They are both to be thanked for making so much of their painstaking research and amazing collection available to the rest of us.
Louise is incredibly gifted in her ability to incorporate the beautiful scripts, ornamentation and images of a bygone era and give them a contemporary look. She, singlehandedly, puts to rest the old canard - "never judge a book by its cover". I have no doubt the packaging she creates outshines most of the products contained therein.
I would add, in addition to the obvious visual merits of this book, Mrs. Fili is quite a wordsmith. She has a definite flair for turning a phrase. Her ability to create prose with a such a decided flourish is rather unique in the genre of the art book. Typically one glides through these books content in just appreciating the images while overlooking the cumbersome writing. Her's is a pleasant exception.
The production quality of this book is all one could hope for and well deserving of its contents. I am quite pleased with this purchase and can't imagine anyone being otherwise. Louise Fili and Steven Heller are certainly prolific but none of their output seems to suffer as a consequence. The only regrets I have felt after finishing one of their books is that there were too few pages. What better compliment!