A Plazm Bookgasm

By Tk Published on .

From Rockport Publishers (rockpub.com) comes XXX: The Power of Sex in Contemporary Graphic Design - and no guest appearance by Vin Diesel, thank God. Written and designed by Portland, Ore., design company Plazm, the slick, $50, appropriately rubber-bound tome covers naughty marketing from print to the internet, featuring plenty of appallingly risque work from louche locations like Australia and France. But it's hardly simply intended as eye candy. "The real surprise to me, having spent a year working on this book with my collaborator, Sarah Dougher, is just how many different executions are really the same," says Plazm partner/CD Joshua Berger. "There are many repeated techniques, as opposed to those that are completely new - the bottom line is that leading-edge design/advertising does not necessarily equate to leading-edge thinking, in terms of using sex and sexuality to market things. One need look no further than the recent spate of '40s pinup girls retrofitted to contemporary campaigns. These images harken back to an era where women's rights were greatly diminished - are we to look at these images now with cool irony? Does their use now constitute progress? One of my hopes for the book is that we as designers take responsibility to disrupt stereotypes and to create a world not simply reflective, but progressive."
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