• Sep 19
  • 0

Helvetica/Objectified/Urbanized: The Complete Interviews Book

Greetings, friends. Over the past eight years I’ve had the pleasure of having conversations with an incredible group of designers for Helvetica, Objectified and Urbanized. But while each conversation might last two hours or more, we only get to use maybe two minutes of it in the film. So if you’ve watched my three documentaries, you’ve actually only seen 3% of the conversations we recorded. That means there are almost 100 hours of amazing interviews that we weren’t able to show you. So we’re going to release the full text of these interviews in a book! And we’ve launched a Kickstarter campaign to make it happen. You can get all the details here.

The book will include in-depth discussions with designers and thinkers like Paola Antonelli, Alejandro Aravena, Chris Bangle, Michael Bierut, Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec, Neville Brody, Tim Brown, David Carson, Matthew Carter, Candy Chang, Yung Ho Chang, Wim Crouwel, Ellen Dunham-Jones, Tobias Frere-Jones, Experimental Jetset, Dan Formosa, Sir Norman Foster, Naoto Fukasawa, Jan Gehl, Jonathan Hoefler, Jonathan Ive, Hella Jongerius, Bruce Katz, David Kelley, Rem Koolhaas, Rahul Mehrotra, Bill Moggridge, Marc Newson, Oscar Niemeyer, Enrique Penalosa, Michael C. Place, Rick Poynor, Dieter Rams, Karim Rashid, Alice Rawsthorn, Stefan Sagmeister, Paula Scher, Erik Spiekerman, Davin Stowell, Jane Fulton Suri, Massimo Vignelli, Rob Walker, Hermann Zapf, and many more… over 75 of the world’s most creative and innovative people.

We want this book to be the most comprehensive design interview book ever published, an invaluable resource for designers, design educators, or anyone interested in the creative process. We’ve got lots of great rewards, so we hope you’ll back the project now and join us in making this happen.


Categories: Design News, Film News, Merchandise

  • Jun 25
  • 0

The Olympic City photo book available now

Gary Hustwit and Jon Pack’s new photography book The Olympic City is now available to order online, through the project website or Amazon.

The Olympic City is an ongoing photography project by Jon Pack and Gary Hustwit that looks at the legacy of the Olympic Games in former host cities around the world. Hosting the Olympics has become a way for a city to show itself off on an international stage and generate toursim dollars, and cities spend millions or billions for the privilege. But after the events are over, the medals have been handed out, and the torch is extinguished, what’s next? What happens to a city after the Olympics are gone?

This 240-page limited-edition hardcover book features approximately 200 photos from the project and a foreword by New York Times architecture critic Michael Kimmelman, and is designed by award-winning graphic designer Paul Sahre. A special edition version that includes original photo prints, and an ebook version are also available.

The book is a limited-edition of 1,000 copies, and most of them are already sold. Get a copy now.

Categories: Design News, Merchandise

  • Nov 26
  • 0

Stream or download Objectified, now!

You can now stream or download Objectified online in high-definition, anywhere in the world, directly from our site. Watch it now!

Categories: Film News, Merchandise

  • Apr 18
  • 0


Urbanized, Gary Hustwit’s latest film and the final piece of the Design Trilogy, has been released on DVD, Blu-ray, and digital download. For more information on the film, and to keep up with Gary’s latest blog posts, visit the Urbanized website.

Categories: Film News

  • Dec 15
  • 5

An Update on “Urbanized”, and How You Can Help

Luke Geissbühler and Gary Hustwit atop a heliport in Santiago, Chile.

Hello friends, just wanted to give you a quick update on Urbanized. We’ve been crazy busy the past six months, traveling and filming all over the world, meeting some amazing people, and getting what I think is some incredible footage. We’re still working on getting a “real” website up for the film, and a trailer, and we’re knee-deep in editing, and… well there aren’t enough hours in the day. Suffice to say that we’ve done extensive filming in a dozen cities on four continents, and we still have at least another six trips to go. We’ll be detailing some of the people and projects we’ve been filming when we launch the real site, within the next 30 days. But my Twitter feed is still the place to get the latest updates and other musings.

How can you support Urbanized? Well, it’s pretty simple. Urbanized is a totally independent project, funded mainly by the revenue from Helvetica and Objectified. So the easiest and best way for you to support the new film is to buy merchandise from the previous films. If you’d like to help out now, you can purchase any of these fine items (they make great gifts, too):

There are less than 20 of these limited prints left, so get them while they’re around. If you’re anywhere in Europe, you can order DVDs from our UK Webshop.

Another way to help if you’re in North America or the UK is to buy or gift a digital copy of Helvetica or Objectified from iTunes.

Thanks again for supporting the film and following along on this journey with us, and I’ll have more news soon.


Categories: Film News

And you thought fonts were geeky…

Helvetica/Objectified/Urbanized cinematographer Luke Geissbühler is really a science geek at heart. He and his 5-year-old son Max, along with a few friends, made a homemade spacecraft out of a Thai food takeout container, outfitted it with an HD video camera and an iPhone, and a few weeks ago used a weather balloon to launch it into the stratosphere. Their amazing video of the project has now gone viral with millions of views, and he’s getting hounded by the media. On a recent filming trip to Europe for Urbanized, all anyone wanted to talk about was Luke’s spacecraft!

P.S. – Nice use of Helvetica for the titles, Luke…

Homemade Spacecraft from Luke Geissbuhler on Vimeo.

Categories: Musings

  • Aug 17
  • 1

Helvetica “Mad Men” limited-edition print

Swiss Dots has produced a new limited-edition screenprint inspired by a 1960’s promotional poster for Helvetica, a version of which keeps popping up on Mad Men this season.

Hand screenprinted on archival 300gsm paper, A2 size (16 1/2″ x 23 1/2″) in a numbered edition of 100 copies, each signed by director Gary Hustwit. $150, order one while they last.

Update, the prints are SOLD OUT!

Categories: Film News, Helvetica, Merchandise

  • Aug 17
  • 2

Objectified on Netflix “Watch Instantly”

Attention Netflix subscribers, Objectified is now available to stream through Netflix’s “Watch Instantly” program. Helvetica too.

Categories: Film News, Helvetica

  • Jul 29
  • 7

The next film: Urbanized

Five years ago I began work on my first documentary, Helvetica, which looked at the worlds of typography and graphic design, and their impact on our visual environment. After Helvetica was released in 2007, I had the idea for a second film, Objectified, which focused on industrial design and product design, and our relationship with the manufactured objects that surround us. While working on Objectified, I realized I wanted to make a third film that would also examine how design affects our lives, and began thinking of the films as a “design trilogy” of sorts.

The third documentary in this trilogy is about the design of cities. Urbanized looks at the issues and strategies behind urban design, featuring some of the world’s foremost architects, planners, policymakers, builders, and thinkers. Over half the world’s population now lives in an urban area, and 75% will call a city home by 2050. But while some cities are experiencing explosive growth, others are shrinking. The challenges of balancing housing, mobility, public space, civic engagement, economic development, and environmental policy are fast becoming universal concerns. Yet much of the dialogue on these issues is disconnected from the public domain.

Who is allowed to shape our cities, and how do they do it? Unlike many other fields of design, cities aren’t created by any one specialist or expert. There are many contributors to urban change, including ordinary citizens who can have a great impact improving the cities in which they live. By exploring a diverse range of urban design projects around the world, Urbanized will frame a global discussion on the future of cities.

Urbanized is currently in production and will premiere in 2011. We’ll be releasing more details about the cities, projects, and people featured in the film in the next few months, along with a proper site. Once again I’ve teamed up with cinematographer Luke Geissbuhler, and I hope you’ll follow along as we complete the film and finish this third exploration into the role of design in our lives.

For the time being, my Twitter feed is probably the best way to keep up with news during this process. Comments, questions, suggestions? info[at]urbanizedfilm[dot]com


Categories: Design News, Film News

  • Apr 10
  • 0

A Visit to Hatch Show Print

Earlier this week I drove from Arkansas to North Carolina to attend the Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, and made a stopover in Nashville. I had the pleasure of visiting the legendary letterpress shop of Hatch Show Print, talking with director Jim Sherraden, and getting a tour of the joint. If you’re not familiar with the press, they’ve been printing for over 100 years, and are most well-known for the show posters they created for early bluegrass and country musicians and venues around Nashville.

Watch this short documentary about the press that was made a few years back.

Chaos reigns!

The lovely Michaela shows me a drawer of their huge collection of wood type.

A Wille Nelson poster in progress.

Carved guitars!

I bought a nice Johnny Cash poster and then hit the road again. You should definitely visit Hatch Show if you’re ever in Nashville. Thanks again to Jim and the staff there for taking the time to show me around.


Categories: Musings

Ads via
The Deck

Rent or download Objectified and Helvetica on iTunes now.