DJ Stout

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DJ Stout is this week’s guest on Writing on the Air.  He’ll be chatting with us about his new book, Variations on a Rectangle: 30 Years of Graphic Design from Texas Monthly to Pentagram (University of Texas Press, 2016).

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djs                    DJ Stout is one of twenty-one partners of Pentagram, a renowned design firm with offices in London, New York, San Francisco, Berlin and Austin. He studied graphic design at Texas Tech University and began his career in 1981, working for Robert A. Wilson Associates in Dallas. In 1987, he moved to Austin, where he was the art director of Texas Monthly magazine for thirteen years.

In 2010 DJ was the recipient of the prestigious Richard Gangel Award, a lifetime achievement designation from the Society of Illustrators. He is a Fellow of the American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA) and the author of two books. DJ’s design retrospective Variations on a Rectangle  was published last fall by the University of Texas Press.

For three decades, DJ Stout’s vision has shaped how we look at the Lone Star State.VARIATIONS ON A RECTANGLE

                “You may not know designer DJ Stout by name, but if you live in Texas, you know his work. His aesthetic has determined the past 30 years of visual Texana, both forward- and backward-looking, from William Wegman’s Weimaraners in cowboy boots to Ann Richards on a motorcycle in fringed white leather. As the art director of Texas Monthly from 1987 to 1999, he guided the magazine’s sensibility out of the big-hair era and into the 21st century. Since then, as the Austin partner of global design behemoth Pentagram, he’s continued to put his stamp on the state, with branding and design work for Lone Star institutions including Texas A&M, the Texas Book Festival and the Salt Lick barbecue restaurant. Now, he’s given us Variations on a Rectangle: 30 Years of Graphic Design from Texas Monthly to Pentagram, a 288-page visual primer on the highlights of his own career.” — Texas Observer

“…One of the most enjoyable books on design I have read in a long time. The book has nearly 800 color images of design work created by Stout and his team, beginning with his work at the renowned Texas Monthly magazine. Most people who worked in graphic design in the late ’80s and ’90s knew of Texas Monthly magazine. The magazine was winning every major design award at the time, and with each new AIGA Annual or paper sample, there were covers and spreads, designed by a guy from Texas named DJ Stout. It seemed then that every regional magazine in the country was trying to emulate what DJ was doing there, but they usually fell short. With each new issue, Stout would blow the doors off again—either with his hand drawn type, or crazy, groundbreaking spreads about Texas things—like rattlesnakes, honky tonks, cowboys, criminals, Willie Nelson, or Texas politicians. I dare say—DJ Stout was making the state of Texas hip.” — The Design Observer

Also see: The short video,  DJ Stout: The Man Who Designed Texas;

The visual display by Fast Company Design, DJ Stout: There Needs to be More Storytelling in Graphic Design;

And, the Variations on a Rectangle’s  NYTimes Review.

See also DJ Stout’s book,  The Amazing Mr. Herbert and His Famous Alpine Cowboys Baseball Club.

And, you can find the author on Twitter.