Beyond Trend

Matt Mattus

This was one of the first books I ever found on corporate media homogenization, though not the best example of the entire subject.

Written by an artist who offers some practical solutions to the problem, but it is quite clear that he is operating from within the strict entrenchments of the industry. His aims are not critical enough to be a true panacea to the problems he addresses. It is a viewpoint on the subject that is very “from within” than “from without,” as Mattus has “led design teams at Hasbro, Inc., in creating break-through branding solutions for kid and teen markets.” (... ick.)

I suppose it is only natural, in Mr. Mattus' case, to not bite the hand that feeds him, yet his small media solutions would simply have no effect in the large media aggregate. While I would normally have classified this book as a marketing text, it remains an ambiguous work that blurs the line between authentic artistry and commercial design. I suspect, had this book achieved any level of success (which it thankfully did not), that critics from the underground such as Anne Elizabeth Moore would've found much to reproach in the Mattus method.

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