Dave Gottwald | Student ID #02223662 | Academy of Art University | School of Graphic Design Final Review | Tuesday, May 12, 2009 | 3:00 pm Themerica is a book design research project consisting of first-hand travel observation, a blog, photography, page layout explorations, a written outline and manuscript, a lecture and lastly, a proposal and pitch to commercial publishers.
AC KN OW LE DG EM E NT S There are many people without whom this MFA thesis would not have been possible. To Elina Rubuliak, for her constant love, encouragement and support, especially through the final days. It simply couldnâ€™t have been done without her. To my friends and family who have always supported my endeavors. To Phil Hamlett and Mary Scott, my directors. Thank you both for your keen eyes, advice and support, and above all, honesty. To my MFA thesis advisors Michael Kilgore and Brett MacFadden. Their careful reviews of Themerica and advice imparted through long years of experience were invaluable to the process. Special thanks must go to Scott Lukas of Lake Tahoe College for his ongoing support of Themerica. He has graciously provided notes and advice on my manuscript, and granted me interview time on his own work on theming. I am especially indebted to Scott for the opportunity to speak on his panel at the 2008 American Anthropological Association Conference: Experiential, Branded, and Lifestyle Spaces: Dialogues Between Architecture and Anthropology. The importance of his enthusiasm for Themerica cannot be overstated.
Copyright ÂŠ 2009 by Dave Gottwald. All rights reser ved. The moral right of the author has been asserted. While numerous photographs were taken by the author, many of the images in this volume come from secondary sources. THIS BOOK IS A NON-COMMERCIAL WORK PRODUCED AS AN MFA THESIS PROJECT FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY. This book is in no way authorized by, endorsed by or affiliated with the Walt Disney Company, Inc., or Disneyland Park. Disneyland Park is a registered trademark of the Walt Disney Company. Other Disney trademarks include, but are not limited to Adventureland, Audio-Animatronics, EPCOT Center, Fantasyland , Frontierland , Magic Kingdom , New Orleans Square, PeopleMover, Space Mountain , Tomorrowland, Walt Disney and Walt Disney World. All references to such trademarked properties are used in accordance with the Fair Use Doctrine and are not meant to imply this book is a Disney product for advertising or other commercial purposes. First Edition. Manufactured in the USA. Printer: Epson R 2400 Bindery: Copymat Body copy and headers are set in Neutraface, designed in 2002 by Andy Cruz, Ken Barber and Christian Schwartz for House Industries. Secondar y copy and captions are set in Archer, designed in 2007 by Tobias Frere-Jones for Hoef ler & Frere-Jones. Script headers are set in Coquette, designed in 2001 by Mark Simonson for Mark Simonson Studio.
“The American DEMANDS THE AN D, TO AT TAIN THE AB SO LUTE
IM AG IN ATI O N REAL THING IT, MUST FABRICATE FAKe.” — Umberto Eco
this project charts thematic environments and places them in an interdisciplinary context.
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fo r m a l a bst r ac t
Th em i n g — d e s i g n i n g i m m er s ive , h o li sti c envi r o n m ents t h a t n a r ra te through the seamless integration of architecture, interiors and graphics—is a prime design movement of the post-war era. With roots in the iconography of late nineteenth century World’s Fairs, Tivoli Gardens of Denmark and Fred Thompson’s Luna Park at Coney Island, thematic design was perfected with the opening of Disneyland in 1955. Frustrated by architects unable to realize his vision, Walt Disney hired Hollywood studio art directors—skilled in cinematography, set design and storyboarding—to develop his park. The painting had replaced the drafting. In the years since, as the approach has proved popular and profitable across the globe, thematic design has come to fundamentally challenge the primacy of the architect in conceptualizing built environments. Themerica is the first design history compendium to address theming not only as a cultural force, but as a movement with its own language. Drawing on the direct observation of retail districts, restaurants and theme parks—from Las Vegas and Southern California to Asia, Europe and the Middle East—as well as interviews with leading practitioners, I trace the lineage of theming from multiple sources, and speculate on future trajectories. Theming has evolved from the quaint ersatz of Disney’s Main Street U.S.A . to the lifestyle-centric desert daydreams of contemporary Las Vegas and burgeoning Dubai. Spanning a vector between two extremes—pure simulation and pure brand—I chart thematic environments and place them in an interdisciplinary context, revealing the shared principles and design techniques that will define twenty-first century placemaking.
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On Theming & Themerica
S c ott A . Lu k a s , P h . D . AU T H O R O F T H E T H E M E D S PAC E A N D T H E M E PA R K
It i s w i t h g r e at p l e a s u r e a n d a n t i c i pat i o n t h a t I c o m m e n t o n D a ve Gottwald’s MFA thesis project Themerica. Theming has become one of the most profound, ubiquitous, and debated consumer society developments over the last thirty years. As I have written of in both The Themed Space and Theme Park, theming represents the use of an overarching theme—whether Western, tropical, pirate, or numerous others—to spatially organize a consumer venue. Gottwald has studied the evolution of theming and has analyzed some most unique connections—ranging from the influences of studio art director Harry Oliver, the many advances of Disney in its theme parks, resorts and other ventures, and the work of many other designers at spaces ranging from the Las Vegas Strip to Dubai— and what is prescient about Gottwald’s analysis is his recognition that theming is the consumer mode of the present. I believe that Gottwald brings out a number of important issues in his thesis project, the most significant of which is the way in which he incorporates his knowledge of design into the analysis of themed spaces. His “in-depth study of thematic design as a visual vocabulary” provides a missing and needed contribution to the study of the materiality of theming in our world. What’s more is that he has striven to combine the academic research on theming with popular cultural analyses in the field and I believe that this synthesis, along with his attractive and aesthetically provocative volume, will provide us with an even more nuanced understanding of theming as a visual vocabulary.
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what is prescient about Gottwaldâ€™s analysis is his recognition that theming is the consumer mode of the present.
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as I r evi ewed many of Gottwaldâ€™s notes and co n ceptual d r awi n gs , I became aware of how important it is to chart this visual, design and cultural influence in as many ways possible.
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The many authors of The Themed Space point out the surprising ways in which theming has become such a dominant vocabulary in our world. Initially, we viewed theming as material and architectural form, but we now understand that theming has come to impact the nature of culture and life itself. I refer to the ways in which the materiality of theming act on the patrons and visitors of these spaces through the idea of “lived theming.” Lived theming implies that the design structures that Gottwald has analyzed have indeed done more than simply strike our visual fancy and pique our curiosity about consumer forms. They have, quite profoundly, impacted how we understand the self, how we consider others, and how we negotiate the world. They have spoken to us, and continue to speak, at the deepest existential and psychological levels. I am particularly excited about Gottwald’s interest in tracing the evolutionary timelines of theming. This work is also significant, for it suggests that just as in other forms of aesthetics and architecture, the materiality of theming is deserving of its own history. In some cases this history is difficult to fathom (primarily because of the inherently playful give and take of the ‘original’ and the ‘copy’ that is a foundation of theming), but Gottwald counsels us to consider the traces (however faint) that may be found in the evolution of the themed space. As I suggest in Theme Park, the theme park and the themed space continue to impact us in numerous ways. I argue that much like art forms, including jazz, the theme park has influenced our visual, kinesthetic, psychological, hermeneutic, and existential nature. The theme park and the themed space have impacted our culture in ways too numerous to count, and as I reviewed many of Gottwald’s notes and conceptual drawings, I became aware of how important it is to chart this visual, design, and cultural influence in as many ways possible. Dave Gottwald ’s MFA thesis project combines design work, cultural analysis , and ethnographic observation in what is a fascinating and forward-looking endeavor. We should look carefully at his project and book proposal as we consider where we have come from in terms of theming and as he guides us through the conceptual maze of the future of theming we should be equally excited and curious.
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It All Began in Chinatown I N S P IRAT I O N F O R T HE P R OJ EC T
“ F o r g e t i t J a k e , i t ’ s C h i n ato w n . ” I n R o m a n P o l a n s k i ’s 1 9 74 n e o - n o i r f i l m , Chinatown, this classic line sums up everything: somehow things will always be different in this mysterious part of the city. The normal laws of reality simply don’t apply here, Polanski seems to say. Indeed, where else could a father buy his son a mogwai for Christmas—the same furry creature that later transformed into gremlins that terrorized an entire community? Where else could Kurt Russell get into Big Trouble? Visit any such neighborhood in the United States, and you’ll probably agree that, by dramatizing Chinatown as a setting, Hollywood is on to something; visit San Francisco’s Chinatown and you’ll be totally convinced. This famous Bay Area enclave is an archetype of the unusual; from the gaudy architecture to the wondrous sights and sounds of market stalls and countless small shops. There’s a curious vibrancy that ’s lacking in other parts of the city, a certain beautiful museum of the bizarre. Hollywood’s interest in Chinatown is oddly appropriate, because at least in San Francisco, it’s the town that tinsel actually built. After the original, ‘old’ Chinatown was completely leveled and burned in the great 1906 earthquake, a new, Hollywood-ized version arose in its place in the 1930s. Every tile-roofed facade and golden-painted pastiche pagoda of this ‘new’ Chinatown was designed and built to meet the expectations of tourists, rather than to reflect the history and heritage of the people who lived there. Look Tin Eli, a wealthy American-born Chinese businessman who played a lead role in the redesign, thought the streets and their buildings should look more
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Hollywood’s interest in Chinatown is oddly appropriate, because it’s the town that tinsel actually built.
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typically “oriental,” so he hired a team of Los Angeles architects to build a façade—a movie set-like collage of fake Asian styles. “The tourist Chinatown was, simply, an invention,” Felicia Lowe once noted, as producer and director of the 1997 PBS/KQED documentary Chinatown. “Tourism was absolutely the basis for the way it looks, but that doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with that.” In fact, despite its lack of authenticity, this Western stereotype of Asian architecture and culture is regarded by San Francisco’s local Chinese community as their own authentic neighborhood. The false had become true, but it hadn’t diminished the meaning of the place. For visitors and locals alike, the over-representation—the ersatz—actually seemed to enhance the public space rather than erode it. Exaggerated and overdone, the kitschy pagodas nevertheless are the true China in just about everyone’s eyes.
Chinatown mood board study, February 2006.
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My first inspirations came strolling through the back alleys of the garish, yet undeniably charming, staged Orientalism of San Francisco’s Chinatown. Having just undertaken a re-branding project of the area, I spent several days combing around through the back alleys—tasting the food, haggling with the merchants—all the while taking copious notes and photos for my research. It was there in the Chinatown library that I learned of the neighborhood’s fabricated post-quake image. Suddenly it occurred to me: San Francisco’s Chinatown was more like a theme park than anything else. The rooflines, windows, tiles, colors and textures had much more in common with say, Disneyland, than with Shanghai. Yet again, the residents regard the curved eaves, colorful street lanterns and recessed balconies not as a construction for their amusement, but rather as their own sense of place. Beyond the gates of the golden dragons was where they worked and lived. Something was going on here that was more than met the eye, and I was determined to dig deeper. I was fascinated by this notion of spatial unreality, and it became the basis for my branding mood board (lower left). When it came time to select a topic for the Visual Communications graduate course, I thought the next logical extension would be to go where I perceived everything had began: Disneyland. Growing up in Southern California just a short drive away, the park was just part of the natural landscape; it was my backyard. I’ve visited countless times with family and friends over the years, so this longer, more in-depth visit would be a familiar one, albeit more serious. During this term-length immersion exploring the Happiest Place on Earth, I learned much about the design and development of Walt Disney’s original concept for his “kiddie park” in Anaheim, California. I found that Disneyland has been a highly influential model for several reasons. First and foremost, the park is really the first holistic story-telling environment of our age. Every detail, from the sights and sounds to the smells, from the architecture to the interiors, from the layout to the landscaping was painstakingly integrated into a series of physical narratives, or “lands.” Second, this Magic Kingdom was unleashed upon American culture at just the right time during the early growth of television, 1955. As Karal Ann Marling and other scholars
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soon I began to see connections between disneyland and the faĂ‡ades of Chinatown. There was a common design approach and visual language.
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have observed, Disneyland was ideally designed for a nuclear family that was beginning to gather around the tube every night, because it was a mediated space. One actually walked through and inhabited the lands as if within a film script. Walt Disney ingeniously marketed the park for a full year before it actually opened on his weekly television show, also called Disneyland. When guests finally did arrive, it indeed felt like they were stepping right from their living room set. Company legend has is that Walt was so enamored with the metaphor that he originally wanted a theater curtain to open and close for each person that walked through the main gate. Not surprisingly, this was deemed impractical. Yet traces of the concept remain; promotional posters line the entry plaza tunnels as if they were the coming attractions of a theater lobby. After an in-depth study of Disneyland, I had begun to see the connections with my earlier walks through Chinatown more clearly. There was a common design approach, or visual language, between the two spaces. The result was a not only a convergence of creative disciplinesâ€”everything from architecture, interiors and landscapes to graphic design, illustration and costumesâ€”but also a particular blending of illusion and reality. As I took a look around, this strange brew was proliferating just about everywhere. Restaurants with rainforests. Gambling in the Great Pyramids. Simulated shopping in every shade of geographic locale imaginable. Worldwide, the design of space has shifted from theme parks to themed malls, from themed neighborhoods to even entirely themed cities. Themerica is an exploration of this global, largely twentieth-century phenomenon. The visual essays which comprise the final manuscript represent a history of what I have come to call thematic designâ€”a creative process planned and executed to produce physical spaces that I have termed thematic environments. The final text for the proposed book is based on both first-hand field observations as well as extensive library research. I tried to read just about every book on theming that I could get my hands on, and I was fortunate enough to correspond with a number of authors and formally interview them about their work. The subjectivity of my own experiences,
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coupled with the objective scholarship and opinions of those I’ve read, form Themerica’s tone. Some have asked me about the title—is this study just about America? Isn’ t that narrow thinking? To that I reply, besides being a pleasant portmanteau, Themerica is not so much a place as a state of mind, bound by imagination rather than geography. Theming as a refined design process may have begun in the United States, but it admittedly had early roots in the garden traditions of both Europe and Asia. Like Disneyland itself, it’s an exaggeration to call America the “birthplace” of theming. Yet it’s this culture where the approach was distilled, mass-produced and exported. Due to overwhelming popularity—and profitability—theming has spread to every corner of the planet, and not just by the expansion of the Disney organization. I don’t feel that the widespread adoption of thematic environments is a cultural imperialism issue, however. If anything America has merely been a conduit, a lightning rod, for this new type of consumer space. Many peers also questioned the relevance of my topic. Disney is so passé, they would tell me, and they’re not alone. Some commentators, particularly in architecture circles, have suggested that theming is over and that grand casinos fashioned after European cities or Polynesian-flavored bars have gone (or are going) the way of the dodo. Again, I reply: state of mind. Theming continues to evolve and change shape. In many ways, it’s leaving the roots of the theme park, Disney-esque aesthetic, yes. Theming continues to be further fused with explicitly designed brand expression, and this development—or continuum—is one of the focal points of the project. How is Niketown like Disneyland? How are they different? Where is the line drawn between what is theming and what is not? In addition to presenting a visual history, I have endeavored to establish a set of criteria that addresses these issues. Sociologists and anthropologists have been very active in advancing the dialog of theming, and others have done likewise for architecture and urban planning. Themerica has the potential to spark similar discussions in design studies.
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The ViSUAL essays WHICH comprise the final manuscript represent A history of what I have come to call thematic design .
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PLANNING & PROCESS
Reading and Research
B U I L D I N G A RE F ERE N CE L I B RARY a nd f i nd i ng a n i c h e
R e s e a r c h o f a n y k i n d invariably begins with reading. After pouring over every single text that had ever been published about theming, I realized that Themerica would be a unique scholarly contribution. There were many titles in social sciences, but no book existed that approached the subject of theming from a design studies perspective. The material I found tended to polarize at two extremes. There were serious, mostly critical (and often quite caustic) essays and glossy, gushing promotional pieces produced in rather close association with, or by, the Walt Disney Company. Themerica is my attempt to fill the void in between. By combining a scholarly, analytic text with copious amounts of attractive photography, illustrations and concept art, the intent is to appeal to theme park fans, design professionals, architects and academics alike. Disney is recognized as the worldwide leader in theme park design, and Disneyland and its sister parks compose an important chapter of the visual history of thematic design. Themerica is not limited to these works, however, and examines both formats that existed prior—such as Copenhagen’s Tivoli Gardens and Coney Island’s Luna Park—and those that have come after, from the elaborate casino hotels of Las Vegas to the desert daydreams of burgeoning Dubai with its lavish shopping malls and resorts.
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E S TA B L I S HI N G A MA S T ER T IME L I N E fo r t h e p r oj ec t
I kept two m ai n j o u r nal s t h ro u g h o u t t h e p ro j e c t . T h e fi r s t wa s fo r re co rd i n g my thoughts and observations from reading primary sources. This allowed me to synthesize the ideas of those scholars that had come before me and decide how to approach their material in the face of my own, ever-evolving viewpoint. I also used this journal to document the planning of the manuscript, including content outlines and notes on the overall structure. Developing a master timeline diagram early long proved to be a valuable tool. Whenever I needed to determine where Themerica stood (typically at the start of each term), I would simply print another version of the timeline and scrawl revisions all over it. Aside from planning, it was in this journal that the ‘guts’ of the manuscript began to take shape. The real challenge was not in gathering and distilling content; rather I constantly had to assert through my notes what Themerica would not be about. Theming had been analyzed successfully before from a sociological perspective, so I made a conscious effort to downplay these elements as my research progressed. All that came before would function only as background—my own perspective as design historian would comprise the foreground.
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All that cam e b efo r e would function only as backgroundâ€” my own perspective as design historian would comprise the foreground.
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Tangled Webs & Overlapping Threads T RACI N G T HE M U LT I - FACE T E D h i sto ry of t h e m i ng
A s I d u g d eep er a n d d eep er trying to establish a comprehensive history, it became apparent that theming developed organically. There is no clear-cut line of succession from Tivoli Gardens to Coney Island, from Disneyland to Dubai. Some projects sprang up seemingly out of nowhere, with little connection to others. Other histories can be traced along for several decades only to abruptly end. EPCOT Center (1982), for example, is the end of a model that dates back to the Chicago Worldâ€™s Fair in 1893, but has not continued. Because I wanted to organize the book outline and manuscript chronologically, this posed a problem. Material would invariably spill over from chapter to chapter with great overlap. The solution was to approach the material categorically instead, while maintain a broad flow from past to present and future.
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GAT HERI N G F IR S T- HA N D E X P ERIE N CE S
I felt that i n o r d er to tr u ly stu dy th e s e p l ac e s , I h a d to v i s i t t h e m fi r s t hand. My travels, which took place from roughly August, 2007 to August, 2008, were to sites that I felt had particular design significance. Since I am a California native, I’ve had the opportunity to examine diverse examples of theming in retail, entertainment and dining environments without traveling very far. Part of this journey included visiting all eleven Disney theme parks around the world, and with good reason—the Disney organization not only perfected the language of thematic design with their first park in Anaheim, California (1955), but they have successfully exported their product to three continents. Using the stateside parks as a sort of ‘control group,’ comparing and contrasting the native and foreign versions of like design models, attractions and environments has allowed me to draw certain conclusions about theming on a global scale. I kept records of these travels in several ways. After augmenting my main travel journal with further notes and sketches, I concurrently maintained a blog where I posted thoughts about each trip, also in rough chronological order, drawing on the massive amount of digital photos I took on location.
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My travels, which took place from roughly August, 2007 to August, 2008, were to sites that I felt had particular design significance .
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Traveling in Search of the Story e i g h t m a jo r t r i ps on t h r e e c ont i n e nts
H O N G KO N G D I S N E Y L A N D RE S O R T
K N OT T ’ S B ERRY FARM
V E N E T IA N MACAU
WA LT D I S N E Y WO R L D RE S O R T
MACAU F I S HERMA N ’ S W HAR F
D I S N E Y L A N D PARI S RE S O R T
L A S V EGA S S T RI P
D U B A i , U N I T E D ARA B EMIRAT E S
U N I V ER S A L S T U D I O S H O L LY WO O D
T IME S S Q UARE , N E W YO RK CI T Y
U N I V ER S A L CI T Y WA L K
AT L A N T IC CI T Y CA S I N O S
T HE G R OV E
TO K YO D I S N E Y L A N D RE S O R T
T HE AMERICA N A AT B RA N D
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i nt e r ac t i ng v i a t h e p r oj ec t blog
V ery e a r ly o n I e s tab l i s h ed t h e m er i c a .o r g a s a n o n l i n e a r c h i ve f o r m y travel research. This allowed me to augment my physical journals with a chronological photographic record of every site I visited. In addition, the website proved invaluable in making connections with design professionals and scholars who have studied theming. Correspondence via the project blog with author Scott Lukas—who lent tremendous support and expertise to Themerica—eventually culminated in a speaking engagement.
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jott i ng down my f i r st h a nd f i e ld obs e rvat i ons
While in the field, I had small notebooks that I scribbled in furiously. I then collated and collaged these into one single, index tabbed chronological journal. When I began writing the manuscript, it was easy to go back and refer to my thoughts on individual sites.
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Disneyland is a nexus from which all theming after has sprung, yet it was not the birthplace. Rather itâ€™s like a laboratory wh er e th is power ful elixir was distilled to perfection.
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walt disney world is the perfect synthesis of u r ban plan n i n g principles and thematic design. neither las vegas nor dubai would exist in their current forms without its example .
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The disney parks abroad represent the incredible adaptability of thematic d esi g n i n r espo n d i n g to native cultural tastes.
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Las Vegas represents the evolution of the resort from architectural motifs to holistic, full-themed fantasy en vi r o n m ents . itâ€™s truly an all-you - can s e e t h e m at i c buff e t.
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Contemporary Theming was born the day that Walt D isn ey fi r ed th e ar ch itec ts an d h i r ed th e art d i r ecto rs .
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d e f i n i ng t h e m at i c d e s i gn
Let ’ s imagine for a moment that you’ve decided to dine at a Mexican restaurant with decor so elaborate in detail that your meal seems to transport you to ancient times. Or perhaps you’ve just ridden on a roller coaster ride that looks and feels like a nineteenthcentury mine train rather than a modern engineering marvel. Maybe instead you’re sitting inside a hotel lobby that feels like a Manhattan street at night. All these instances are popular examples of contemporary thematic design, from Las Vegas to Orlando to Dubai. The term theming can be cause for some confusion. Depending on the field, a theme is an singular topic or message (literature), a subject of representation (fine art) or a recurring melodic piece (music). Most recently, a theme has come to mean a customizable look for a webpage or other application on the internet. While seeming disparate, these definitions do share a common element: a sense of overarching meaning, an omnipresence, a certain holism. Regardless of medium, theme signifies a completeness of vision. Artistically, buildings and gardens have had themes as long as humans have been constructing them. Civilization’s earliest and most impressive sites often expressed the spiritual (religious or otherwise) and the communal (power structures such as the state). The natural world—seasons, weather, geography, plants and animals—was also a powerful and popular theme. Human environments have long had overarching, cohesive visual messages and they always will. Yet just because a space has a theme does not mean that it’s themed in a contemporary sense: theming is a matter of process.
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All theming begins with stor y, not struc ture. As such , the architec t is not at the conceptual center of the project. Often, they are peripheral to the design process, and are called in during later stages to realize the spacial vision of others; in other words, to ‘build it for real.’ Disney has been a leader in theming since the opening of the original Magic Kingdom park, and their ubiquitous Mickey Mouse icon is recognized the world over. Quite by accident, Mickey’s circular features are useful for visualizing the thematic design process as it is practiced today by Disney and others. Theming is a blend of three core creative disciplines: architecture, graphic design and interior design. All the supporting visual aspects of theming—including landscapes, wayfinding, costumes and lighting—derive from these core three. The larger context of this creative alchemy, however, is the language of cinema. Film is arguably the defining narrative medium of the twentieth-century, and thematic environments are really the physical, spatial equivalent of a night at the movies. Not coincidentally, they rose to prominence concurrently with developments in entertainment and amusement venues. The true watershed moment was the day Walt Disney hired Hollywood studio a r t d i re c to r s to p e r s o n a l l y d e s i g n a n d b u i l d h i s D i s n ey l a n d p a r k . S u d d e n l y t h o s e t ra i n e d in building sets, editing film and directing actors were design real, physical spaces to be inhabited in real -time. Element s of cinematic language have since contributed to a “choreography of space” that Anna Klingmann, author of Brandscapes, calls “casino architecture.” Disney has labeled this creative process imagineering, a por tmanteau of imagination and engineering. Walt himself defined this as “the blending of creative imagination and technical know-how.” More accurately, perhaps, theming is a heady brew of s to r y - te l l i n g s t r u c tu re s , i nte r i o r s a n d g ra p h i c s co n co c te d by fi l m m a ke r s . Within the overarching language of cinema, however, there exists a continuum that runs between two extremes: pure simulation and pure brand.
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GR APHIC S
Towa r ds F i lmmak i ng A rchit
P U R E S I M U L ATI O N As theming moves towards pure simulation, the architectâ€™s primacy gives way to the art director and the writer. Immersion and departure from time and place increase.
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Towa r ds A DV E R T I S I N G ect ure
PURE BRAND As theming moves towards pure brand, the architect maintains a more traditional leadership role. Concept overtakes narrative and setting becomes ethereal.
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Making A copy for copyâ€™s sake.
P U R E S I M U L ATI O N : R E P LI CATIV E TH EM I N G At the simulation extreme, replicative theming re-creates another time and place in the purest form, with the highest level of detail possible. Interpretive and original forms are minimal; this is a copy for copy’s sake. Montage may be used to compress or recombine elements, yet the source material is tightly focused, rather than a composite. A great deal of emphasis is placed on exactitude of the copy, and this attention to detail is often marketed with pride. Such specific atmospherics tend to deeply immerse the audience in the given theme. Thematic design of this type is very popular in Las Vegas. The Venetian Hotel and Casino, for example, very specifically recreates a particular place (Venice) during a particular time (the High Renaissance). The goal is not a general sense of “Italian-ness” or “Euopean-ness” but rather a distinct “Venetian-ness.” Simulations such as these are the earliest form of contemporary theming.
Romancing what never REALLY was.
R E P R E S E NTATI O N A L S paces : i nte r p r etive TH EM I N G Interpretive theming is re-creation with a greater emphasis on providing an atmospheric composite. In the words of scholar Scott Lukas, the result is a “placeless place,” or a copy for which no original actually exists. Attention to detail is still very high, but the exactness of the copy is no longer paramount. These representations are highly romanticized, and there is an added emphasis on nostalgia and ‘cleaning up’ visual contradictions as well as sanitizing social conflicts. Disney excels at producing this kind of theming. Main Street U.S.A. is a key component of all five Magic Kingdom-style parks around the world. Although inspired by Walt Disney’s personal recollections of growing up in Marceline, Missouri from 1906–1911, its design is not a real copy of that town in any meaningful way. Rather, Main Street embodies elements from many similar small towns of the era, to create a general feeling of “American turn-of-the-century-ness.” It’s an amalgam, and moreover Disney’s version lacks the muddy streets, cluttered telephone lines, crime and class struggle of the original. Many of the most popular contemporary thematic environments are representational spaces in this way.
throwing it all in a blender.
R E F E R E NTIA L S paces : D e - Conte xtualiz ed TH EM I N G De-contexualized theming is a post-modern response to the proliferation of simulations and representations. In this format, the architect asserts a more traditional leadership role. Narrative elements are secondary, and the overall level of detail is secondary to the concept. The format is montage with multiple (and often contradictory) influences that add up to a less cohesive presence. As a result, referential environments are less immersive. Here replication has been abandoned in favor of creating more unique forms, but visual and structural references to external sources remain. This shift is from representation to reference—from embodiment to homage. Architect Jon Jerde pioneered these referential spaces in the 1980s as a very explicit and conscious rebellion against the work of Disney. The effect is not unlike taking other forms of thematic design and throwing them in a blender to see what falls out. Retail spaces such as Universal Citywalk in Los Angeles and Orlando, and the Hershey Store in New York City’s Times Square follow this format. The design of many contemporary themed restaurants—such as the Hard Rock Cafe, Planet Hollywood and House of Blues—are also examples of this referential style.
TRANSFORMING marks into spaces.
PURE BRAND: S elf - Refle xive TH EM I N G At the brand extreme, self-reflexive theming (a term coined by scholar Alan Bryman) is a format with a completely internal reference: one generated by the brand itself. The key distinction is that other types of theming all rely on some amount of external reference to construct narrative. Anna Klingmann calls these self-reflexive spaces “brandscapes.” The architect retains a leadership role, but works more closely with brand managers and advertisers to realize the concept. Pure brand environments are more cohesive than referential ones, yet they too lack the immersion and detail that replications and representations provide. Since the 1990s, the number of such retail chains (and related “flagship” locations) has increased dramatically. The Niketown stores, for example, transform the trademark ‘swoosh’ into both an architectural element and a stylistic design flourish throughout. The branding language of Nike, as expressed through their advertising in other media formats, is adapted to theme the retail space. Here story has been supplanted by concept, and immersion has given way to synergy. These brandscapes are the most recent form of contemporary theming to develop.
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Esta bl i s h i ng t h e c e nt r a l f i gu r e s of t h e m ov e m e nt
B eg i n n i n g i n t h e l at e n i n e t een t h c en tu ry, four major traditions in thematic design have developed and evolved through mutual cross-pollination. They are by no means exclusive. However, these four broad categories form a common linage. None of the lead personalities behind each tradition were properly trained or licensed as architects, yet all four men (and their associates) radically changed the nature of consumer environments. FAIR S , E X P O S I T I O N S & AM U S EME N T S Began with the 1893 Chicago World's Fair, and is embodied by the work of Fred Thompson, who later went on the create Luna Park at Coney Island, New York. H O L LY WO O D RE - CREAT I O N S Began with the Storybook Style of architecture pioneered by Harry Oliver. FA N TA SY L A N D S A N D P L EA S U RE GAR D E N S Began in the nineteenth century with Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen. Revived and popularized by Walt Disney a century later. CA S I N O RE S O R T S A N D H OT E L S Began in Tijuana at Agua Caliente Resort in 1928, designed by Wayne McAllister. He later took his work to Las Vegas and laid the foundation for its current thematic state.
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F RE D T H O M P S O N
HARRY O L I V ER
WA LT D I S N E Y
WAY N E MCA L L I S T ER
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“The concept or a style iS ENTIRELY SECOND-RATE EVEN FA K E S .”
component OF ACCESSIBLE IN EXAMPLES AND — Pablo Picasso
From Thesis to Proposed Book p r e pa r i ng to p i tc h t h e m e r i c a
B ec au s e T h e m er i c a a s a n M FA t h e s i s p r oj ec t is academic in nature, I’ve been at liberty to include copious amounts of concept art and photography I would otherwise have to seek proper permissions to reproduce commercially. The project thus put me at an advantage— I was in a position to design the book however I see fit, and exercise complete editorial control over the final product. For commercial publication, however, I will have to tailor Themerica to both the needs of rights holders and the publisher that will bring it to market. Editorially, I expect Themerica to undergo serious revisions in both content and design to satisfy these requirements. It’s important to note that the sample chapter I will provide in my book proposal reflects the design explorations as produced for my MFA thesis, and must remain open to revision and re-design as a commercially published book.
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I will have to tailor ThemericA to both the needs of rights holders and the publisher that will bring it to market.
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Theme Park as Metaphor o r ga n i z i ng t h e c ont e nt
U s i n g t h e t h e m e pa r k a s m e tap h o r , T h e m e r i c a i s d i v i d e d i n to f o u r s e c t i o n s . The first is Main Gate, which is an introductory piece that includes a preface by noted theming scholar Scott Lucas. Here I define my terms and give an overview of the creative process: the visual vocabulary of theming. The principal theories are all covered here. A Walk Through the Park is the second section and the bulk of the Themerica. I present an early history of theming from Worldâ€™s Fairs to Coney Island, a discussion of Disneyland and its impact, and a survey of Las Vegas. In the center of this volume is a pictorial feast of theming from around the world, categorized into seven basic archetypes which recur frequently in our own culture, and have spread around the world. O utside the B erm looks at theming beyond amusement p arks and resor t hotels . I examine notable retail spaces, and the extension of thematic design into lifestyle spaces through the New Urbanism movement. The last part of this section is devoted to an overview of burgeoning Dubai. Lastly, Backstage contains a coda and offers a look at my process and research through a series of indices: a list of my travels, a full bibliography and photo credits.
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M ai n Gate it ’ s n ot a pl ace , it ’ s a state o f m in d Welcome to Themerica™
tellin g tales to all th e sen ses Defining the Visual Vocabulary
A Walk Th rough the Pa r k THE ORIGINS O F 20th centu ry THEMING Early Forms of Consumer Meaning, Experience and Place
frien d ly faces , fa m iliar pl aces The Seven Basic Archetypes of the Twentieth Century
th e m ag ic kin g d om ® mo d el Disneyland® and the Birth of a New Language
(Still) le arn in g from l as vegas The All-You-Can-See Thematic Buffet
O uts i de the B e r m th e pl acem akin g revo lutio n From Pure Simulation to Pure Brand
th em in g as lifestyle Urban and Suburban Unrealities
Backstage th is way to th e e xits Future Trajectories for Thematic Design
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my layouts serve as p r oof of co n cept fo r publishers. It was very important that i not suggest that my designs are intractable.
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Layout Explorations D e s i gn i ng t h e boo k
A ft er w r i t i n g n e a r ly h a l f o f t h e m a n u s c r i pt— w h i c h i s b a s e d o n b o t h my first hand field observations as well as primary sources—I began design explorations to define how the final book might take shape. In order to make the project attractive to potential publishers, it was important to develop style, typographic and layout conventions without suggesting that they are intractable. I made decisions regarding form factor, grid, and color that I felt were best appropriate. House Industries’ Neutraface was suitable for body copy throughout, as the family expresses a clean mid-century modernism that also suggests the architectural roots of the material. Frere-Jones’ Archer paired well with it for captions and sidebar copy. I added Coquette, a deco revival script by Mark Simonson, for a playful and carnival-like nature that still retains a certain formal look. Although the text is a global study, theming is an American innovation. The primary red and blue hues suggest this national character. Each of the seven basic archetypes features an exclusive typeface that captures the essence of that theme. The Wild West is set in a wood revival face. Rudolf Koch’s Neuland gives the appearance of crudely cut letters, so it was appropriate for the thatched roof Tiki bars of Tropical Paradise. Of special note is Bradley Gratis, an 1895 typeface credited to Joseph Warren Phinney, which has been used on signage throughout the Disney theme parks.
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t h e n e e d fo r a c o m p r e h e ns i v e volu m e
T h e m er i c a b ega n w i t h the age-old authorâ€™s adage: write the book that you yourself would want to read. As a graphic designer, an architecture aficionado, and a theme park enthusiast, I was frustrated with the glaring gap on my studio bookshelf. It seemed that no one had yet written the comprehensive volume, the definitive study of thematic design. Certainly, theming has been discussed widely in other fields. Historians, sociologists, anthropologists, architects, urban planners, cultural critics, and theorists have all published works on this far-reaching phenomenon. Yet the story has not been told either for a mass audience, or in a visually compelling manner. Some books have a high level text, with little or no supporting illustration and design; others still have attractive photography, but without a serious narrative. In addition, the more interesting existing architectural titles focus only on Disney, and donâ€™t address theming as a design movement that transcends theme parks to affect retail environments, casinos, restaurants, and residential districts. Themerica traces the history of thematic design from the late nineteenth century to the present day, covering Disneyland and its sister parks, gambling centers Las Vegas and Macau, burgeoning Dubai, and numerous smaller examples worldwide. The title is a portmanteau of Theme and America, and refers to a design language that was born in the United States and has since become global in scope.
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Along with providing a visual history, Themerica places theming in a interdisciplinary context—the intersection between interior design, architecture, and graphic design. This context is fleshed out in a series of common characteristics that can be used to evaluate spaces and establish the dividing lines between theme and brand, style and motif, original and copy—and identify where these criteria overlap. Above all, Themerica is a visual and visceral study; a lavishly illustrated compendium of one of the most influential—yet often overlooked—movements of the twentieth century. Sociologists, historians and anthropologists have all had their say; it’s time to add a multifaceted design history perspective to this fascinating subject.
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Themerica speaks to the creative professional, instructor, student, art & design reader and dedicated enthusiast.
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w h o i s l i k e ly to r e a d t h e boo k?
T h e m er i c a i s ta r g e t ed at a fa r w i d er au d i en c e than similar existing titles. There is currently a rift between two extremes—serious, high-level academic texts on the subject (with little or no visual interest); and photographic puff-pieces issued by Disney (and others) that don’t take the material seriously enough. The higher-level texts tend to be very insular and obtuse, and are not intended to be read outside academia; their readership is severely limited. On the other hand, it is difficult for professionals and enthusiasts to take the lighter, glossy promotional books seriously. Themerica is about bridging this audience gap—bringing the creative professional, instructor, student, art & design reader, and dedicated enthusiast to one single title that both excites visually and provides a high-level text—yet does not alienate the lay reader like so many existing critical titles. Themerica also has a special market in education, for numerous existing titles on theming are already in use at the university level (in architecture, urban planning, design, sociology and anthropology). Because Themerica combines a social science topic with a design study, it fits multiple needs across multiple disciplines—and provides a visually-rich alternative to unadorned textbooks.
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s e v e n b a s i c r e a d e r c at ego r i e s
C R E ATIV E D IR EC TO R Owns numerous titles on design, architecture, history, pop-culture, and fine art. Considers Themerica to be an ideal title to add to his studio reference library, and/or his home library. Bought the book both to read completely and to glance through.
U N IV E R S IT Y A RC H ITEC TU R E / D E S I G N P RO F E S SO R Considers Themerica to be an authoritative book on the subject of experiential design, an ideal title to add to her home studio library, and a perfect choice to assign to students.
A RT & D E S I G N B O O K fan Book buyer who owns numerous titles from Chronicle, Taschen, et al. Attracted to the professional production, quality of photography, and the overall subject matter. She bought the book primarily for the visuals, as a coffee-table piece.
A RC H ITEC TU R E A F I C I O N A DO Upmarket book buyer who frequently shops Chronicle, Taschen, Princeton Architectural, et al. He bought the book primarily to read, but also to display as a coffee-table piece.
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D I S N EY TH EM E PA R K E NTH U S IA ST Owns every book ever written about Disney, theme park design, and related subjects. He bought the book primarily for the visuals, as a coffee-table piece, but also is interested in reading the entire text over time.
U N IV E R S IT Y P RO F E S SO R I N TH E SOC IA L SC I E N C E S Considers Themerica to be an authoritative book on the subject of theming, an ideal title to add to his home studio library, and a perfect choice to assign his students for class.
A RC H ITEC TU R E / D E S I G N STU D E NT Either she was required to purchase the book for a class, or (as many students are apt to do) bought the title because of general interest in the material, to add to her home studio library.
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e x i st i ng t i tl e s a nd t h e i r a pp e a l
B U I LD I N G A D R E A M : TH E A RT O F D I S N EY ARCHITECTURE AU T H O R Beth Dunlop (architecture critic) P U B L I S HER Harry N. Abrams, 1996 D IME N S I O N S 8.75" x 11.25" PAG E C O U N T 208
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T E X T Dunlop examines Disney’s unique take on architectural form, including then CEO Michael Eisner’s commissioning of leading postmodern architects for many of Disney’s corporate buildings. Touches only briefly upon theming and its significance. While not strictly laudatory, appears to have been produced with the cooperation (or at least the passing blessing) of the Walt Disney Company. D E S I G N Typical architectural volume, with both color and black & white photography. No original illustration, only some conceptual art. Standard publisher’s typesetting. AU D IE N CE Architectural practitioners, critics, professors and students. To a lesser degree (due to the tone and focus of the writing), Disney theme park enthusiasts. D I F F ERE N T IAT I O N Building a Dream focuses only on Disney as actor, and architecture as subject. As such, theming is not approached as a design language that exists beyond Disney, nor beyond architecture as a form. Themerica frames theming in an interdisciplinary context with multiple actors, including Disney.
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D E S I G N I N G D I S N EY ’ S T H E M E PA R K S : TH E A RC H ITEC TU R E OF REASSURANCE E D I TO R Karal Ann Marling (art historian) P U B L I S HER Flammarion/CCA, 1997 D IME N S I O N S 10.25" x 11.25" PAG E C O U N T 223
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T E X T Marling authors the central essay and edits the seven additional essays, each by a different contributor. The critical tradition of Disney, the phenomenon of Disney parks around the world, and Disneyâ€™s architectural philosophy are all given ample coverage. Authorized by Disney and produced to accompany the exhibition The Architecture of Reassurance: Designing the Disney Theme Parks organized by the Canadian Centre for Architecture. D E S I G N Typical architectural volume, with both color and black & white photography. Lavishly illustrated with Disney concept art. Annotation befitting an exhibition monograph. Professional typography. AU D IE N CE Architectural practitioners, critics, professors, and students. Visitors to the exhibition. To a lesser degree (due to the very serious and academic tone of the writing), Disney theme park enthusiasts. D I F F ERE N T IAT I O N Designing Disneyâ€™s Theme Parks focuses only on Disney as actor, and architecture as subject. Theming is covered only in passing, and is not treated as its own design movement and language. The text is more appropriate for an academic audience, and would be considered obscure in some places by the lay reader. Themerica speaks to both professional and casual audiences.
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TH E U N R E A L A M E RI CA : A RC H ITEC TU R E & I LLU S I O N AU T H O R Ada Louise Huxtable (architecture critic) P U B L I S HER The New Press, 1997 D IME N S I O N S 8" x 10" PAG E C O U N T 188
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T E X T Huxtable unleashes a scathing critique of theming as social illusion and control, taking Disney and others to task in a vigorous essay format. Though academic in tone, the piece is highly subjective. D E S I G N Architectural volume augmented by black & white photography. No original illustration, very little conceptual art. Standard publisherâ€™s typesetting. AU D IE N CE Architectural practitioners, critics, professors, and students. Cultural critics and sociologists. D I F F ERE N T IAT I O N The Unreal America is unforgivingly critical in its discussion of theming as an aesthetic and social aberration. This commentary is timely and well-written, but does not discuss the history of theming and its characteristics as a design language. In addition, the photographic content is especially unflattering. Themerica is a visual survey that charts the entire history of theming, and gives voice to both celebratory and critical views.
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D R E A M WO R L D S : A RC H ITEC TU R E & E N T E R TA I N M E N T AU T H O R Oliver Herwig (journalist) P U B L I S HER Prestel, 2006 D IME N S I O N S 7.75" x 9.5" PAG E C O U N T 157
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T E X T Her wig explores the history of architecture and its relationship to entertainment, from classical to present times. Going well beyond theming, the author includes traditional amusement parks and other pleasure venues; a particular emphasis is given to utopian urban planning. Critical and subjective, but also open and exploratory. Because it was translated from the original German, the writing is somewhat obtuse at times. D E S I G N Attractive original photography shot specifically for this volume, as well as some sourced images and concept art. Below average typography. AU D IE N CE Architectural practitioners, critics, professors, and students. Urban Planners, professors and students. Cultural critics. Amusement park enthusiasts. D I F F ERE N T IAT I O N Dream Worlds only spotlights theming in a few spreads, and in a single essay on Walt Disney World. The global scope of the piece is a closer match to Themerica than other examples, and the level of custom photography is quite high, but the overall design lacks a compelling vision. Themerica covers the worldwide phenomenon of theming in a handsomely designed, covetable artifact.
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TH E TH EM I N G O F A M E RI CA : A M E RI C A N D R E A M S , M E D IA FA NTA S I E S , A N D TH EM E D E N VIRO N M E NT S AU T H O R Mark Gottdiener (sociologist) P U B L I S HER Westview Press, 2001 (first ed., 1997) D IME N S I O N S 6" x 9" PAG E C O U N T 206
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T E X T Gottdiener provides the most complete discussion of theming in the social sciences; the work could be considered essential. The history of theming is outlined, with in-depth discussions of Disneyland, Las Vegas, and retail districts around the country. The tone is more academic and not intended to reach beyond a university readership. D E S I G N Scholarly text with very few photographs; those provided are black & white and are taken by the author. Standard publisherâ€™s typesetting. AU D IE N CE Professors and students of the social sciences. Academics of related disciplines and cultural critics. D I F F ERE N T IAT I O N The Theming of America frames theming as a sociological phenomenon; as such, design definitions are not employed. There are numerous venues and categories in The Theming of America that would not be considered thematic spaces in a design context. In addition, the book is not designed for a wide audience and is not intended to be a visual survey; Themerica is both.
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e x i st i ng t i tl e s a nd t h e i r a pp e a l
B R A N D SCA P E S : A RC H ITEC TU R E I N TH E E XP E RI E N C E ECONOMY AU T H O R Anna Klingmann (architect) P U B L I S HER The MIT Press, 2007 D IME N S I O N S 7.25" x 9.25" PAG E C O U N T 364
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T E X T Klingmann brings the discussion of branding and architecture to the twenty-first century, noting how the conceptualization of built environments has fundamentally changed in our current economy. Advertising and media studies are also given even play. In a detailed section on Las Vegas, the author elaborates on what she calls the “architecture of choreography”—hinting briefly at the design language and unique characteristics of theming. The tone is specialized and intended for those with an architectural background. D E S I G N Architectural volume augmented by black & white photography. No original illustration, very little conceptual art. Professional typography. AU D IE N CE Architectural practitioners, critics, professors, and students. Academics of related disciplines and cultural critics. D I F F ERE N T IAT I O N Brandscapes discuses theming in the context of branded spaces and media environments, and this factors heavily into the chapter on Disneyland’s creation. However, the book is architecture-centric, does not address the material from a design perspective, lacks a visual approach, and speaks to a narrow academic readership. Themerica stresses the interdisciplinary nature of theming and speaks to a wider audience via compelling visuals .
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e x i st i ng t i tl e s a nd t h e i r a pp e a l
VI N Y L LE AV E S : WA LT D I S N EY WO R LD A N D A M E RI CA AU T H O R Stephen M. Fjellman (cultural anthropologist) P U B L I S HER Westview Press, 1992 D IME N S I O N S 6" x 8.75" PAG E C O U N T 492
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T E X T Fjellman presents the most complete and cohesive sociological examination of Walt Disney World as a global tourist mecca as well as distinctly American expression of history, politics and culture. Based on first-hand observations of the resort’s multiple parks over a one year period, and integrates the thinking of several leading cultural theorists. The tone, although more accessible than other scholarly sources on the subject, might nonetheless alienate the lay reader. D E S I G N Scholarly text with no photographs. Standard publisher’s typesetting. AU D IE N CE Students and scholars of the social sciences and related disciplines. Cultural critics. To a lesser degree (due to the sociological tone and often critical writing), Disney theme park enthusiasts. D I F F ERE N T IAT I O N Vinyl Dreams dissects Walt Disney World— and Disney World only— through the lens of the social scientist; aesthetic and design considerations rarely factor into the discussion. Although based on direct observation, the book presents no photographic record of the author’s long journey through these multiple thematic spaces. Themerica chronicles theming at Disney and beyond as a design movement, and references first-hand observation using both photography, illustration, and narrative.
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TOTA L L A N D SCA P E , TH EM E PA R KS , P U B L I C S PAC E AU T H O R Miodrag Mitrasinovic (architectural theorist) P U B L I S HER Ashgate Publishing, 2006 D IME N S I O N S 8.75" x 9.75" PAG E C O U N T 296
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T E X T Mitrasinovic examines the notion of privatized â€œpublicâ€? spaces, and argues that the productive and consumptive facets of the theme park model have now been exported beyond entertainment and amusement venues and become ubiquitous. The writing level and tone is highly specialized and aimed at a post-graduate audience. D E S I G N Academic textbook format augmented by black & white photography. Some original illustration, some conceptual art. Professional design and typography. AU D IE N CE Students of architecture, urban planning, and the social sciences. Architectural practitioners, professors, theorists and critics of these and other related disciplines. D I F F ERE N T IAT I O N Total Landscape is an extremely serious study of the overall social ramifications of privatized, branded and thematic environments from the perspective of both architectural theory, urban planning and the social sciences. This is a textbook not intended to be read outside of academia and as such its readership is limited. Themerica addresses theming as a design study, and is intended to reach a wide audience.
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TH E TH EM E D S PAC E : LOCATI N G N ATU R E , CU LTU R E , A N D S E LF E D I TO R Scott Lukas (cultural anthropologist) P U B L I S HER Lexington Books, 2007 D IME N S I O N S 6" x 9" PAG E C O U N T 336
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T E X T Lukas assembles a diverse series of essays, and authors the introduction and a piece on Las Vegas (a primary area of interest). Coverage is global, addressing thematic environments from a sociological and anthropological viewpoint, with little focus given to aesthetics. Venues other than Disney are stressed, especially more obscure locations abroad. The tone is targeted towards a university audience, but is less insular than other similar titles. D E S I G N Scholarly text with no photographs. Standard publisherâ€™s typesetting. AU D IE N CE Professors, students and theorists of the social sciences. D I F F ERE N T IAT I O N The Themed Space is strictly a sociological and cultural text that does not discuss design issues, even from an architectural perspective. Themerica addresses theming as a design movement with its own language and characteristics, and employs compelling visuals to tell a story of exhaustive first-hand observation, interwoven with social and cultural considerationsâ€”all intended for an audience than transcends academia.
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TH EM E PA R K AU T H O R Scott Lukas (cultural anthropologist) P U B L I S HER Reaktion Books, 2008 D IME N S I O N S 6" x 9" PAG E C O U N T 272
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T E X T Lukas addresses the theme park as a pivotal cultural artifact of the twentieth century. Coverage is global, addressing thematic environments from a sociological and anthropological viewpoint, with only minimal focus given to aesthetics. The tone is targeted towards a university audience, but is less insular than other similar titles. D E S I G N Scholarly text with numerous photographs of varying quality. Professional typography. AU D IE N CE Professors, students and theorists of the social sciences. To a lesser degree (due to the tone and focus of the writing), theme park enthusiasts. D I F F ERE N T IAT I O N Theme Park is strictly a sociological and cultural text that does not discuss design issues, even from an architectural perspective, although it delves deeply into tracing some of the history of theming. Themerica addresses the topic from both a design studies and historical perspective. Themerica employs compelling visuals to tell a story of exhaustive first-hand observation, interwoven with social and cultural considerationsâ€”all intended for an audience than transcends academia.
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Selected Bibliography BOOKS
Adams, Judith A. The Amusement Park Industry. Boston: Twayne Publishers, 1991. Alcorn, Steve and David Green. Building a Better Mouse: The Story of the Electronic Imagineers Who Designed EPCOT. Orlando: Theme Perks Press, 2007. Anderson, Martyn J., ed. The Jerde Partnership International: Visceral Reality. Milan: L’Arca Edizioni, 1998. Anderton, Frances. You Are Here: The Jerde Partnership International. London: Phaidon, 1999. Antonelli, Paola; Andrew Garn (ed.) and Udo Kultermann. Exit to Tomorrow: World’s Fair Architecture, Design, Fashion 1933–2005. New York: Rizzoli/Universe, 2007. Basten, Fred E. and Charles Phoenix. Fabulous Las Vegas in the 50s: Glitz, Glamour & Games. Santa Monica: Angel City Press, 1999. Baudrillard, Jean. Simulacra and Simulation. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1994. Beard, Richard R. Walt Disney’s EPCOT Center. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 1982.
Bokovoy, Matthew F. The San Diego World’s Fairs and Southwestern Memory, 1880–1940. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 2005. Brandon, Pam. One Day at Disney. New York: Hyperion, 1999. Bright, Randy. Disneyland: Inside Story. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 1987. Brown, Denise Scott; Steven Izenour and Robert Venturi. Learning from Las Vegas: The Forgotten Symbolism of Architectural Form. Boston: The MIT Press, 1977. Bryman, Alan. The Disneyization of Society. Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications, 2004. Budd, Mike, ed. and Max H. Kirsch, ed. Rethinking Disney: Private Control, Public Dimensions. Middletown: Wesleyan University Press, 2005. Chung, Chuihua Judy, ed. The Harvard Design School Guide to Shopping. Koln: Taschen, 2002. Clavé, S. Anton. The Global Theme Park Industry. Oxfordshire: CABI, 2007.
Danish, Andrew and Alan Hess. Palm Springs Weekend: The Architecture and Design of a Midcentury Oasis. San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 2001. Dunlop, Beth. Building a Dream: The Art of Disney Architecture. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 1996. Eco, Umberto. Travels in Hyperreality. San Diego: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1986. Ferrari, Michelle and Stephen Ives. Las Vegas: An Unconventional History. New York: Bulfinch Press, 2005. Findlay, John M. Magic Lands: Western Cityscapes and American Culture After 1940. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1992. Finnie, Shawn. The Disneylands That Never Were. London: Lulu Enterprises, 2006. Fjellman, Stephen M. Vinyl Leaves: Walt Disney World and America. Boulder: Westview Press, 1992. Foglesong, Richard E. Married to the Mouse: Walt Disney World and Orlando. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2001. Fox, William L. In the Desert of Desire: Las Vegas and the Culture of Spectacle. Reno: University of Nevada Press, 2005. France, Van Arsdale. Window on Main Street: 35 Years of Creating Happiness at Disneyland Park. Nashua; Laughter Publications, 1991.
Franci, Giovanna and Federico Zignani. Dreaming of Italy: Las Vegas and the Virtual Grand Tour. Reno: University of Nevada Press, 2005. Ghez, Didier. Disneyland Paris: From Sketch to Reality. Paris: Nouveau Millenaire Editions, 2002. Gilmore, James H. and B. Joseph Pine. The Experience Economy: Work Is Theater & Every Business a Stage. Boston: Harvard Business School Press, 1999. Gordon, Bruce and David Mumford. Disneyland: The Nickel Tour (2nd edition). Santa Clarita: Camphor Tree Publishers, 2000. Gordon, Bruce and Tim Oâ€™Day. Disneyland: Then, Now and Forever. New York: Disney Editions, 2005. Gordon, Bruce and Kevin Rafferty. Walt Disney Imagineering: A Behind the Dreams Look at Making the Magic Real. New York: Hyperion, 1996. Gottdiener, Mark. The Theming of America: Dreams, Visions and Commercial Spaces. Boulder: Westview Press, 1997. Gottdiener, Mark. The Theming of America: American Dreams, Media Fantasies and Themed Environments (2nd edition). Boulder: Westview Press, 2001. Graebner, William, ed. True Stories From The American Past (Volume II, Since 1865). New York: McGraw-Hill, 2002. Harris, Richard. Early Amusement Parks of Orange County. San Francisco: Arcadia Publishing, 2008.
Hench, John, with Peggy Van Pelt. Designing Disney: Imagineering and the Art of the Show. New York: Disney Editions, 2003. Herwig, Oliver. Dream Worlds: Architecture and Entertainment. New York: Prestel Verlag, 2006. Hess, Alan. Viva Las Vegas: After Hours Architecture. San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 1993. Hess, Alan. Googie Redux: Ultramodern Roadside Architecture. San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 2004. Hiaasen, Carl. Team Rodent: How Disney Devours the World. New York: Ballantine Books, 1998. Hibbard, Don. Designing Paradise: The Allure of the Hawaiian Resort. New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2006. Huxtable, Ada Louise. The Unreal America: Architecture and Illusion. New York: The New Press, 1997. Iannacci, Anthony, ed. Gensler Entertainment: The Art of Placemaking. Milan: L’Arca Edizioni, 2001. Joyce, Alan. Secrets of the Mouse: An Unofficial Behind-the-Scenes Guide to Disneyland Park. Seattle: CreateSpace, 2008. Kirsten, Sven A. The Book of Tiki. Koln: Taschen, 2003.
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Kirsten, Sven A. Tiki Modern. Koln: Taschen, 2007. Klingmann , Anna. Brandscapes: Architecture in the Experience Economy. Cambridge: The MIT Press, 2007. Koenig, David. More Mouse Tales: A Closer Peak Backstage at Disneyland. Irvine, California: Bonaventure Press, 1999. Koenig, David. Mouse Tales: A Behind the Ears Look at Disneyland. Irvine, California: Bonaventure Press, 1994. Koenig, David. Realityland: True-life Adventures at Walt Disney World. Irvine, California: Bonaventure Press, 2007. Koolhaas, Rem and Mau, Bruce. S, M, L, XL. Koln: Taschen, 1998. Kuenz, Jane; Karen Klugman, Shelton Waldrep and Susan Willis. Inside the Mouse: Work and Play at Disney World. Durham: Duke University Press, 1995. Kurtti, Jeff. Since the World Began: Walt Disney World, The First 25 Years. New York: Hyperion, 1996. Kurtti, Jeff. The Art of Disneyland. New York: Disney Editions, 2005. Kurtti, Jeff. Walt Disneyâ€™s Imagineering Legends and the Genesis of the Disney Theme Park. New York: Disney Editions, 2008.
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Lainsbury, Andrew. Once Upon a Dream: The Story of Euro Disneyland. Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 2000. Lukas, Scott. The Themed Space. Lanham: Lexington Books, 2007. Lukas, Scott. Theme Park. London: Reaktion Books, 2008. Markey, Kevin. Around the World with Disney. New York: Disney Editions, 2005. Markey, Kevin. Secret’s of Disney’s Glorious Gardens. New York: Disney Editions, 2006. Marling, Karal Ann. As Seen On TV: The Visual Culture of Everyday Life in the 1950s. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1994. Marling, Karal Ann, ed. Designing Disney’s Theme Parks: The Architecture of Reassurance. Paris: Flammarion/CCA, 1997. Mau, Bruce and David Rockwell. Spectacle. New York: Phaidon, 2006. Mitrasinovic, Miodrag. Total Landscape, Theme Parks, Public Space. London: Ashgate Publishing, 2006. O’Brien, Tim. Legends: Pioneers of the Amusement Park Industry. Orlando: Ripley Entertainment, 2006. Phoenix, Charles. Americana the Beautiful: Mid-Century Culture in Kodachrome. Santa Monica: Angel City Press, 2006.
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Phoenix, Charles. Southern California in the â€™50s: Sun, Fun and Fantasy. Santa Monica: Angel City Press, 2001. Phoenix, Charles. Southern Californialand: Mid-Century Culture in Kodachrome. Santa Monica: Angel City Press, 2004. Raz, Aviad E. Riding the Black Ship: Japan and Tokyo Disneyland. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1999. Real, Michael. Mass Mediated Culture. Englewood Cliffs: Prentice Hall, 1977 Register, Woody. The Kid of Coney Island: Fred Thompson and the Rise of American Amusements. NewYork: Oxford University Press, 2001 Ritzer, George. Enchanting a Disenchanted World: Revolutionizing the Means of Consumption (2nd edition). Thousand Oaks: Pine Forge Press, 2005. Rockwell, David. Pleasure: The Architecture and Design of Rockwell Group. New York: Universe Publishing, 2002. Samuelson, Dale and Wendy Yegoiants. The American Amusement Park. St. Paul: MBI Publishing, 2001. Schickel, Richard. The Disney Version (3rd edition). Chicago: Elephant Paperbacks, 1997. Schultz, Jason and Kevin Yee. 101 Things You Never Knew About Disneyland. Orange: Zauberreich, 2005.
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Schultz, Jason and Kevin Yee. 101 Things You Never Knew About Walt Disney World. Orange: Zauberreich, 2006. Schultz, Jason and Kevin Yee. Magic Quizdom. Orange: Zauberreich, 2003. Shannon, Leonard. Disneyland: Dreams, Traditions, Transitions. Anaheim, California: Walt Disney Attractions Merchandise, 1993. Sklar, Martin A. Walt Disneyâ€™s Disneyland. Anaheim, California. Walt Disney Productions, 1969. Smoodlin, Eric, ed. Disney Discourse. Oxford: Routledge, 1994. Sorkin, Michael, ed. Variations on a Theme Park. New York: Hill & Wang, 1992. Stewart, James B. DisneyWar. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2006. Strodder, Chris. The Disneyland Encyclopedia. Santa Monica: Santa Monica Press, 2008. Surrell, Jason. Pirates of the Carribean: From the Magic Kingdom to the Movies. New York: Disney Editions, 2005. Surrell, Jason. The Haunted Mansion: From the Magic Kingdom to the Movies. New York: Disney Editions, 2003. Surrell, Jason. The Disney Mountains: Imagineering at its Peak. New York: Disney Editions, 2007.
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Telotte, J.P. The Mouse Machine: Disney and Technology. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2008. Thie, Carlene. Disneyland: The Beginning. Riverside: Ape Pen Publishing, 2003. Thie, Carlene. Homecoming Destination Disneyland. Riverside: Ape Pen Publishing, 2005. Thomas, Bob. Walt Disney: An American Original. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1976. Walt Disney Productions. Disneyland: The First Quarter Century. Anaheim, California: Walt Disney Attractions Merchandise, 1979. Walt Disney Productions. EuroDisney. Paris: Walt Disney Attractions Merchandise, 1992. Walt Disney Productions. Walt Disney World: The First Decade. Orlando, Florida: Walt Disney Attractions Merchandise, 1993. Wallace, Michael. Mickey Mouse History and Other Essays. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1996. Wasko, Janet, ed. Understanding Disney: The Manufacture of Fantasy. Cambridge: Polity Press, 2001. Watts, Steven. The Magic Kingdom: Walt Disney and the American Way of Life. New York: Houghton Mifflin, 1998. Wright, Alex. The Imagineering Field Guide to Disneyâ€™s Animal Kingdom. New York: Disney Editions, 2007.
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Wright, Alex. The Imagineering Field Guide to Disneyland. New York: Disney Editions, 2008. Wright, Alex. The Imagineering Field Guide to Epcot. New York: Disney Editions, 2006. Wright, Alex. The Imagineering Field Guide to the Magic Kingdom. New York: Disney Editions, 2005. Yee, Kevin. Mouse Trap: Memoir of a Disneyland Cast Member. Orlando: Ultimate Orlando Press, 2008. Yee, Kevin. Tokyo Disney Made Easy. Orlando: Ultimate Orlando Press, 2008. Zukin, Sharon. Landscapes of Power: Detroit to Disney World. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1991.
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Selected Bibliography p e r i od i c a ls
De Roos, Robert. “The Magic Worlds of Walt Disney.” National Geographic 124 (August 1963): 159-207. Francaiglia, Richard V. “Main Street U.S.A.: A Comparison/Contrast of Streetscapes in Walt Disney World.” Journal of Popular Culture 15 (Summer 1981): 141-56. Goldberger, Paul. “Mickey Mouse Teaches the Architects.” New York Times, October 22, 1972, Section 6, p.40. Gottdiener, Mark. “Disneyland: A Utopian Urban Space.” Urban Life 11 (July 1982): King, Margaret J. “Disneyland and Walt Disney World: Traditional Values in Futuristic Form.” Journal of Popular Culture 15 (Summer 1981): 116-37. Marling, Karal Ann. “Disneyland 1955.” American Art 5 (Winter/Spring 1991): 167-207. Mechling, Elizabeth Walker, and Jay Mechling. “The Sale of Two Cities: A Semiotic Comparison of Disneyland with Marriot’s Great America.” Journal of Popular Culture 15 (Summer 1981): 166-79.
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Muschamp, Herbert. “Disney: Genuinely Artificial, Really Surreal.” New York Times, October 4, 1998, AR41. Weinstein, Raymond M. “Disneyland and Coney Island: Reflections of the Evolution of the Modern Amusement Park.” Journal of Popular Culture 26 (Summer 1992): 131-62.
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Selected Bibliography sp ec i a l publ i c at i ons
Kurtti, Jeff. The Magic Begins with Me. New York: Disney Editions, 2005. Marling, Karal Ann with Donna R. Braden. Behind the Magic: 50 Years of Disneyland. Dearborn: The Henry Ford, 2005. The Walt Disney Company. The Art of Disneyland 1953–1986 (exhibit Catalog, The Disney Gallery Inaugural Exhibition 1987–1988), 1987. The Walt Disney Company. From the Kingdom of Dreams: The Art of Disneyland, The Magic Kingdom, and Tokyo Disneyland (Exhibit Catalog, The Disney Gallery Tokyo Disneyland), c. 1988. Walt Disney Productions. Walt Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean. Anaheim, California. Walt Disney Productions, 1969.
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Selected Bibliography v i d eo r ec o r d i ngs
Disney Theme Park Merchandise. Imagineering the Magic. DVD (2 discs), 2008. Walt Disney Video. Walt Disney Treasures: Disneyland - Secrets, Stories & Magic. DVD (2 discs), 2007. Walt Disney Video. Walt Disney Treasures: Disneyland USA. DVD (2 discs), 2001. A&E Home Video. Modern Marvels: Walt Disney World (History Channel). DVD, 2006.
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MFA Coursework c o m pl e t e d c l a ss e s
FA L L 2 0 0 5
S P RI N G 2 0 07
GR.615 History of Graphic Design
GR.612 Integrated Communications
GR.616 Making Ideas Visible
GR.613 Experimental Typography
GR.617 Type Survey I S U MMER 2 0 07 S P RI N G 2 0 0 6
GR.801 Thesis Development
GS.601 Aesthetics and the Renaissance GR.618 Visual Literacy
FA L L 2 0 07
GR.619 Type Survey II
FA.631 Book Arts
S U MMER 2 0 0 6
GR.699 Connecting the Dots
GR.606 Publication Narratives GS.602 Art & Ideology of the 20th Century S P RI N G 2 0 0 8 FA L L 2 0 0 6
GR.330 Typography 3 (Undergraduate)
GR.600 Visual Communications Lab
GR.429 Information Design (Undergraduate)
GR.601 Elements of Typography
Directed Study (one-on-one advisement)
GR.605 Digital Design Studio
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S U MMER 2 0 0 8 GS.604 Professional Practices FA L L 2 0 0 8 GR.604 Nature of Identity GS.608 Professional Presentation Directed Study (one-on-one advisement) S P RI N G 2 0 0 9 GR.650 Portfolio Seminar GS.603 Anthropology Directed Study (one-on-one advisement)
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a wo r d a bout t h e aut h o r
Dave was born and raised near San Juan Capistrano in Southern California. Always passionate and inquisitive about both visual communications and the social sciences, he chose the latter for his formal education. Although Dave received his BA in history from California State University San Marcos in 2001, his work experience for over nine years has been in the field of graphic design. Until beginning graduate studies, Dave was a self-taught designer who had worked his way from in-house art departments to principal of his own multimedia firm, Optional Design Group. ODG created a variety of solutions for both online and fixed digital media, however after five years of solid work and industry praise, Dave really yearned to get ink on his fingers again. Graduate studies at the Academy of Art University have afforded him the opportunity to build a more robust print portfolio, expand and sharpen his skills, and delve into research, design theory and education. Dave has been a faculty member at the Academy since July 2006. He has taught the Pre-College Art Experience in graphic design for three consecutive semesters, and lead critique workshops as a student mentor for the Academy Resource Center. Dave also serves on the board of AIGA San Francisco as Education Co-Chair.
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dav e gottwa ld , g r a p h i c d e s i gn e r
S TAT EME N T O F I N T E N T After owning an interactive studio for five years, I chose to attend graduate school and build a print portfolio. Having obtained my MFA, I’m eager to rejoin a team environment. My passions include history, publishing, education, narrative development and brand strategy. S KI L L S A N D Q UA L I F ICAT I O N S Over nine years spent envisioning, concepting, pitching, writing, roughing, comping, presenting, revising, producing, delivering. Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Acrobat, Quark, Flash, Dreamweaver, MS Office. Mac and PC fluency. Mastery of Flash multimedia authoring. Print production experience in both digital color and offset workflows. Experience with digital photography, digital video and sound editing. I happen to have a knack for identifying typefaces.
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EM P LOYME N T HI S TO RY 07.2006–05.2008
ACADEMY OF ART UNIVERSITY INSTRUCTOR
Taught graphic design part-time for the Pre-College Art Experience program. Also led graduate workshop sessions for the Academy Resource Center as a Student Mentor. 05.2006–09.2006 EUDESCO SENIOR DESIGNER Designed and developed both print and multimedia solutions for a variety of clients including Gap Inc., Urban Bay Properties and Pelikan Technologies. 03.2000–08.2005 OPTIONAL DESIGN GROUP
Designed and developed countless websites and flash multimedia projects. Produced numerous brand identities and print collateral packages. Art directed contract employees and interns. Did everything else that comes with running a small studio. 08.1999–07.2000 DYSON & DYSON REALTY SENIOR DESIGNER Designed and developed all in-house print marketing. Spearheaded the company’s first online and multimedia division, then conducted website management and continued to lead the print design team and manage overall production.
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E D U CAT I O N MFA Graphic Design 2009, Academy of Art University Class Valedictorian Nominee (GPA 3.9) BA History 2001, California State University, San Marcos PAR T ICI PAT I O N & P R O B O N O AIGA San Francisco Board Education Co-Chair Compostmodern 2006, 2008, 2009 2007 Adobe Design Matters Live Series AWAR D S & REC O G N I T I O N HOW 2009 International Design Annual Art Directors Club 2009 Portfolio Review AAU Spring Show 2006, 2007, 2008
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