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Abstract City

This book is available for download with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device, and with iTunes on your computer. Books can be read with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device.


In July 2008, illustrator and designer Christoph Niemann began Abstract City, a visual blog for the New York Times. His posts were inspired by the desire to re-create simple and everyday observations and stories from his own life that everyone could relate to. In NiemannÆs hands, mundane experiences such as riding the subway or trying to get a good nightÆs sleep were transformed into delightful flights of visual fancy. The struggle to keep up with housework became a battle against adorable but crafty goblins, and nostalgia about New York manifested in simple but strikingly spot-on LEGO creations. This brilliantly illustrated collection of reflections on modern life includes all 16 of the original blog posts as well as a new chapter created exclusively for the book.

From Publishers Weekly

May 14, 2012 – If OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) were an art form, Niemann would be Michelangelo. He does best concocting a graph to illustrate his fluctuating coffee cravings; a pie-chart to isolate the components of that slippery beast, the Really Great Idea; or even a photomontage designed to underscore the difficulties of combating lint. His undeniable graphic prowess becomes diluted when he focuses on the Berlin Wall over 10 pages, as well-meaning as his intentions may be. “She was the wall’s first official victim,” writes Niemann, about Ida Siekmann. “And here I was, pitying myself because I had slept only a few hours and couldn’t get my DSL connection up and running.” Indeed. There’s nothing really abstract about Abstract City, a compilation retracing Niemann’s often self-aggrandizing New York Times blog, but he does have an uncanny knack for encapsulating those anecdotal-yet-unavoidable moments that constitute the background chatter of a New Yorker’s existence, like shopping at Fairway. He does almost equally well describing the more serious vagaries of metropolitan life, such as the subway system and the weather. Most satisfying is the section Niemann devotes to “unpopular science,” in which his linear art and his fastidious, analytical wit mesh perfectly, distilling some wicked good humor.
Abstract City
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  • $16.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Design
  • Published: Apr 01, 2012
  • Publisher: Abrams
  • Seller: Harry N. Abrams, Inc.
  • Print Length: 256 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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