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Sign Painters

Sign Painters

Princeton Architectural Press

By Faythe Levine and Sam Macon


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There was a time—as recently as the 1980s—when storefronts, murals, banners, barn signs, billboards, and even street signs were all hand-lettered with brush and paint. But, like many skilled trades, the sign industry has been overrun by the techno-fueled promise of quicker and cheaper. The resulting proliferation of computer-designed, die-cut vinyl lettering and inkjet printers has ushered a creeping sameness into our visual landscape. Fortunately, there is a growing trend to seek out traditional sign painters and a renaissance in the trade. In 2010 filmmakers Faythe Levine, coauthor of Handmade Nation, and Sam Macon began documenting these dedicated practitioners, their timehonored methods, and their appreciation for quality and craftsmanship. Sign Painters, the first anecdotal history of the craft, features stories and photographs of more than two dozen sign painters working in cities throughout the United States.

• Foreword by the legendary painter Ed Ruscha (a former sign painter)
• Features sign painters young and old, including the new vanguard working solo or in shops such as San Francisco’s New Bohemia Signs and New York’s Colossal Media’s Sky High Murals
• Tied to the Sign Painters documentary, screenings in Fall 2012 and Winter 2013
• Second book by Faythe Levine, coauthor of our best-selling Handmade Nation

More Details

Size: 7.5 x 9.5 in;
Pages: 176 pp;
Format: Paperback
Publication: October 2012
ISBN: 9781616890834
ISBN10: 1616890835