A label on a bottle of wine; a colleague's desktop calendar; the layout of an article. Good design can crop up anywhere, and it's impossible to know what it will look like until you see it, but when you do, you instantly know. For over 90 years, the American Institute of Graphic Arts has attempted to chronicle the designs that make you stop and look, and then look again; the crème de la crème of of the graphic design world, if you will.
The Catcher in the Rye. A Clockwork Orange. The Great Gatsby. Some book covers are almost as iconic as the words printed between them. To evoke the essence of a story while maintaining the mystery of the unread words within is an artform, indeed – and quite often an unsung one. That's why we're so excited for the 50 Books/50 Covers exhibit going on now at the Chronicle Books on 2nd Street. The event features selections from the American Institute for Graphic Arts' juried picks of the 50 best-designed books and book covers for 2008.