Friday Fives, Vol. 105
Every Friday we highlight five things we have on our radar that we think should be on yours, too.
Here’s this week’s Friday Fives.
To anyone who has lived in New York City for a good amount of time, the subways are a breeze to navigate (but a pain to actually use). But for anyone who’s just moved to the city, our antique subway system is a labyrinth of overlapping lines and confusing directions. And while our phones may be the easiest way to navigate the trains, it doesn’t hurt that we can always rely on the good old subway map to find out how to get places. While transit maps have been around since the subway’s inception in 1904, the current map, designed by Michael Hertz Associates, only came into being in 1979. Created to make a complicated system much simpler to understand, the map made use of simplified color schemes and organic lines to make navigating the web of trains a more intuitive experience. This short history lesson by the New York Times takes you through the design choices that went behind the current subway map. Be warned though: much like the sensation you get when you walk into an incredibly wonderful smelling train car, the animations used in this article might make you a little nauseous. — MC
The past ten years have been full of rich cultural moments. Together we’ve dougied, dabbed, woahed and flossed. We watched Shia Lebeouf watch his entire filmography for three days straight. We witnessed Beyonce use a groundbreaking album premiere to call out her husband’s infidelity. We made incredible strides in LGBTQ rights, used #MeToo as a platform for victims of assault, and we marched for racial equality, women’s rights, climate change and an end to gun violence. We got really into fidget spinners and really into end-of-year lists. As the world becomes a more globalized, connected place, and trends accelerate, we bring back early 2000’s fashion simultaneously with 80’s music. Memes, which once had lifespans of years, like The Rickroll and Numa Numa, now have an estimated life span of a few weeks (Yes, Baby Yoda has to go). The latest trend has been Spotify’s End-Of-Year lists, where folks with Spotify Premium can see not only the past year, but where the past decade took them musically. From a surge in the repopularization of Afrobeat, to an increasing trend towards genre blending (ie. Lil Nas X, FKA Twigs, Sturgill Simpson, Solange) it’s been an incredible wrap to a decade, and leaves us wondering what the next ten years hold for not only music, but the world at large. — AD
Brace yourself: This is going to be a real tear jerker. There may be a french fry shortage, this very year. After being hit with cold weather and Hurricane Dorian, potato crops remained damaged throughout the United States and Canada. It is believed that this year held the lowest level of potato output since 2010. So head up to your local McDonald’s and begin stockpiling. For when there are no more fries, something within us all, dies. — AH
A historic problem in the art world is getting grass-roots attention. Gender parity is finally being addressed, and addressed seriously at the Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA). In 2020, the museum will only purchase art by women to offset their overwhelming 96% of work by male artists. As a part of this new initiative the BMA will prioritize a diverse range of women and their stories, perspectives, and experiences.
For many women and especially women of color, proper representation is few and far between. “Purchasing an artist’s work goes deeper than just temporarily borrowing it from another collection. It funds the artist and allows curators to feature her for years to come.” As much equity that is generated for an artist and her works, the same value is translated to the community — the value is cultural, experiential, and crucial for generations to come. — CB
While the world seems to burn, and as each day passes we find ourselves in a more dire state than the last, it is slightly comforting to know that there are a group of scientists dedicated to searching for another habitable planet we as a species can again ruin. This cohort of nerdy superheroes are on the clock 24/7, monitoring potential planets within 100 light years. (Obligatory note: Light years are a measure of distance, not time — the distance that light travels in a year). While these victims — er I mean planets are still very far away, it is proactive we are compiling the planetary hit list, even though we, technology-wise, are still far from reaching them. — MC2
The Working Assembly is an award-winning multidisciplinary design studio with a focus on branding and visual design.
Founded in 2014, we partner with clients and agencies for end-to-end brand building, including strategy and visual identity, print and digital design, content and creative communications.
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