Now You See Me

This ground-breaking book celebrates a century of work by black graphic artists, architects, and fashion designers whose art has helped define key cultural moments and movements. This vibrant and wide-ranging book, full of photographs and illustrations, aims to correct that oversight, bringing a century of Black designers and their work into focus. The book is organized into three sections focusing on Fashion, Architecture, and Graphic Design. Charlene Prempeh uses the pioneering work of key figures from the 20th and 21st centuries to explore important aspects of how Black design has been perceived within culture and society. The core design motif is representative of African fabric and cloth block colors, which are expressed boldly and vibrantly on the cover. These colors also help organize way-finding as someone flips through the pages but also draw attention to the vibrancy of Black life. To then uplift Black design excellence, the four typefaces chosen for the publication are also produced by Black designers. The title is set in Harlemecc by Jaamal Benjamin, nodding back to the Harlem Renaissance. The subheadlines and callouts are the faces: VTC Spike, VTC Tre, and The Neu Black all designed by Tré Seals; each containing and retelling an important aspect of Black history, the civil rights movement, aspects of Spike Lee’s career, and Tré’s storytelling approach to building a typeface. The body copy is set in Halyard designed by Joshua Darden Studios and acts as a thread across the sections to ground the history of Black Design.

Designed by Randa Hadi, Brian Johnson and Silas Munro