Centered: People and Ideas Diversifying Design (Paperback)

Centered: People and Ideas Diversifying Design By Kaleena Sales Cover Image

Centered: People and Ideas Diversifying Design (Paperback)


A rich, inclusive, contemporary, and global look at design diversity, past and present, through essays, interviews, and images curated by design educator and advocate Kaleena Sales.

As the design industry reexamines its emphasis on Eurocentric ideologies and wrestles with its conventional practices, Centered advocates for highlighting and giving a voice to the people, places, methods, ideas, and beliefs that have been eclipsed or excluded by dominant design movements.

Curated by Kaleena Sales, a powerful voice and noted advocate for diversity in the design community, the thirteen essays and interviews in this volume feature important and underrepresented design work and projects, both historical and present-day, including:

  • Gee’s Bend Quilters, by Stephen Child and Isabella D’Agnenica
  • A Chinese Typographic Archive, by YuJune Park and Caspar Lam 
  • Indigenous Sovereignty and Design: An Interview with Sadie Red Wing (Her Shawl is Yellow)
  • The Truck Art of India, by Shantanu Suman
  • New Lessons from the Bauhaus: An Interview with Ellen Lupton 
  • Vocal Type: An Interview with Tré Seals
  • Decolonizing Graphic Design, A Must, by Cheryl D. Miller 
  • And more

Filled with striking visuals from a range of global designers, Centered is a must-read and must-have for design practitioners, educators, students, and anyone interested in expanding narratives and gaining a more inclusive understanding of design diversity and its impact on culture.

Kaleena Sales is an Associate Professor of Graphic Design and Chair of the Department of Art & Design at Tennessee State University, an HBCU in Nashville, TN. She is a coauthor of Extra Bold: A Feminist, Inclusive, Anti-Racist, Non-Binary Field Guide for Graphic Designers, and cohosts a podcast about design and culture with Design Observer. During her service on AIGA’s Design Educators Community Steering Committee, Sales advocated for a more inclusive view of design history, through her Beyond the Bauhaus writing series, from which this book originated. Sales formerly served as Director of Diversity and Inclusion for AIGA Nashville.

Product Details ISBN: 9781797223629
ISBN-10: 1797223623
Publisher: Princeton Architectural Press
Publication Date: October 24th, 2023
Pages: 192
Language: English
"In Centered,  a delightful, compelling collection of stories, anecdotes, and interviews about design, Kaleena Sales takes the reader on a voyage to show many diverse design practices. From Alabaman quilts to Indian truck art to Kurdish rugs and patterns to African alphabets and the experience of the Ziwa school in Zimbabwe, this collection opens up the world of design and design history beyond Euro-American design. This is a much-needed text for anyone trying to broaden their understanding of design or for professors and students seeking diverse design practices.”
—Lesley-Ann Noel, co-editor of The Black Experience in Design and author of Design Social Change

"This is one important collection of writing. I’m blown away by its range and scope and insight and grace and—as a whole—by the impeccable nuanced flow of it all.”

—Jessica Helfand, Design Observer

"Centered pushes against the boundaries of the ways graphic design practice has been traditionally defined. The essays examine ongoing practices across the globe—some of which span hundreds of years, others starting only within the last few. Nearly everyone in this book eschews a modernist approach. Said another way: this is the plural design reference we deserve. As an educator, I’m so grateful for this book as a way to expand my own ways of thinking about and teaching design, but also to simply have this book to share with my students, who understandably crave and rightfully demand this pluralism as a matter of course.”
—Briar Levit, Professor of Graphic Design, Portland State University