nomad is a culture magazine for the design conscious. Minimal in design, it is nonetheless adventurous in its layout and content, with thought-provoking articles that come somewhat unexpectedly. You don’t have to be a designer to enjoy this magazine, you only need to have an open mind and a sense of intrigue when it comes to what is happening in the world.
nomad actually incorporates three covers to suit each buyer, an attention to detail that might easily be overlooked. The first cover is the one that everyone sees, this time featuring artist Cécile B. Evans. The second is seen by flipping back the first, outer dust jacket, which reveals a minimalist contents page with topics and writers listed with understated integrity. An image can speak a thousand words, but well-chosen words can speak more in half the number. Flip back the dust jacket and the magazine bears its matt skin: white, with the title nomad printed in black with a subtitle ‘Where to go?’ underneath. Perfectly clear and more suited to those seeking to cut the fodder.
One of the greatest pleasures of nomad is its typography, which veers and descends, entertaining the eye as it goes. Let’s not lie to ourselves; towers of blocks of text are intimidating but this is also what the magazine is about. If you celebrate designers by asking their opinions on wider themes rather than just mere creation and design, you’re going to think outside of the box and innovate the bog-standard layout of a magazine. It conveys exactly the ingenuity which is going on that realm.
This fifth issue deals with the theme of the future, of how humans react to new and unfamiliar situations, and how humanity is developing. Much of its content is speculation, intrigue and experimentation, with viewpoints from photographers to architects. Dan Chen tries to unpick the intricacies of human intimacy with synthetic comfort robots that give supportive pats on the back and even a comforting hand to hold at the end of life. Hervé This, arguably the founder of note-by-note cuisine, claims our kitchens could evolve to look more like pharmacies. Other designers veer towards the natural world and how it affects us emotionally. These include Junya Ishigami, whose pursuit is to ‘overcome the separation between of indoors from outdoors’, and Carlo Ratti, founder of The Senseable City Lab. Created by engineers, physicists, biologists and sociologists, the Senseable City Lab responds to our inherent need for nature and green spaces in urban sprawl. And so, as it goes on, it becomes less about design and more about unifying eclectic viewpoints and presenting intriguing ideas.
If you picked up nomad and saw it was a design magazine especially for non-designers or aesthetic lovers, you think, well, how does this apply to me? If you’re an adventurous reader or someone who loves to consume information from unlikely places, nomad is an indispensable addition to your shelf. It’s a delightfully unexpected way to keep up with the modern day.