On Memphis, Pattern, and MacPaint - Lined and Unlined
On Memphis, Pattern, and MacPaint - Lined and Unlined
Michael Bell-Smith
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MacPaint was the centerpiece of Mac aesthetics, where users could create their own graphics using tools designed by Susan Kare and her team. Kare’s patterns, created in 1983, are remarkably evocative of Memphis’s, and the amoeboid losenge and anvil-like trapezoid on MacPaint’s basic toolbar reveals a formal influence as well. Even Kare’s famous system font, Chicago, nods to Memphis by picking up the name of a famous American city for an arbitrary reason. In so doing, Chicago the font and Memphis the movement are rendered equivalent to places we know while not even evoking them in the slightest. So there’s a metaphorical flattening as well.

On Memphis, Pattern, and MacPaint - Lined and Unlined

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