May 2003

The Art Of Looking Sideways

Phaidon Press Inc.

  • 180 Varick Street
  • New York , NY


Alan Fletcher’s visual compilation " abc The Art of Looking Sideways xyz " takes the reader on a "destination without a journey." Throughout this massive 1064 page book the reader will find images, ideas, quotations, anecdotes, memories, musings and various other philosophies. Although its size is intimidating, the book does not need to be read in accordance to its chapters to be enjoyed.

This book can be opened up to any page and there will be a different perspective offered from the author’s stream of conscious. Starting with thoughts on creation, a huge cosmic photo juxtaposes thoughts on the Big Bang Theory. A few flips of the pages and you will find profound discussions on art, light, color and aesthetics.

Any lover of art would benefit greatly from paging through " abc The Art of Looking Sideways xyz ." Every aspect of visual life is touched upon, if not thoroughly analyzed. Even abstract ideas like emotions, desire, and dreams are explored. In the section of dreams, Fletcher takes interpretations from psychologists, authors, artists and philosophers. He applies this open-minded formula of taking one topic and dissecting it from every angle to give the reader a completely different perspective and the ability to really think about their own perception of life. It is an amazing visual collection of words and photos that is essential to all design majors or anyone interested in the relationship between the written word and the visual image.

Reviewer: Marytza Rubio, FIDM Library Staff Member, O.C.