Winner of the 50 Books 50 Covers Award from the
American Institute of Graphic Artists

ISBN 0-9637264-6-3
152 pages (includes 39 color plates)

$20.00 Postpaid

In nine observant, quirky, and irreverently spirited essays, Libby Lumpkin suggests that what appear to be deep theoretical problems of art are merely simple problems of design. Highlights include a history of the Smiley Face, in which she illuminates the iconography of the smile from the art of archaic Greece and first-century India to Leonardo da Vinci and Andy Warhol. In a history of the Prohibition Symbol, she traces the transgressive connotations of the diagonal slash back to Pythagorean mathematics; and in another essay she locates the sources of the conceptual bent in contemporary art in the Antique opposition of liberal and vulgar practices. In a biting critique of prevailing feminist art theories, Lumpkin develops the central argument of Deep Design. Beginning with a playful look at ancient Assyrian goddess figures and Las Vegas Showgirls, and ending with reviews of feminist art exhibitions of the nineteen nineties, she proposes a feminist theory based upon power rather than virtue.