Roy Behrens

Emeritus Professor of Graphic Design and Distinguished Scholarat University of Northern Iowa
Dysart,
United States
Focus area: Art History, Biology, Design, Illustration, Painting, 2D Forms, Psychology, Cognitive Studies, Urban Planning, Built Environment, Writing, Literature, Poetry

Until his retirement from teaching in 2018, Roy R. Behrens was Professor of Art and Distinguished Scholar at the University of Northern Iowa. He had taught graphic design and design history at UNI and other schools for more than 45 years. He is the author of seven books, and literally hundreds of articles in journals, books, and magazines, and has appeared in broadcast interviews on NOVA, National Public Radio, Australian Public Radio, BBC, and Iowa Public Television, as well as in documentary films. He has been a nominee for the Smithsonian Institution's National Design Awards, has received the Iowa Board of Regents Faculty Excellence Award, and has been described in Communication Arts magazine as "one of the most original thinkers in design."
Many of his publications focus on the involvement of artists, designers, and architects in the development of Modern-era camouflage. In addition, he is also greatly interested in gestalt theory, the life and laboratory set-ups of Adelbert Ames II, the creative process (including humor), and the practice of graphic design, especially as these topics pertain to vision and the visual arts. His most recent book is Frank Lloyd Wright and Mason City: Architectural Heart of the Prairie (2016).
In 1985, while teaching at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, he launched a “periodical commonplace book” called Ballast Quarterly Review (the title is an acronym for Books Art Language Logic Ambiguity Science and Teaching), which he continued to publish for twenty-one years. All back issues of BALLAST can now be accessed online (and downloaded as pdf files) at <https://scholarworks.uni.edu/ballast/>.
More information and a wide selection of his work can be accessed at <http://www.bobolinkbooks.com/BALLAST/>. In addition, he actively maintains two blogs at <https://thepoetryofsight.blogspot.com/> and <https://camoupedia.blogspot.com/>. Much of his published work is accessible online at <https://northerniowa.academia.edu/RoyBehrens>.

Journal Articles:

A Typographic Workbook: A Primer to History, Techniques and Artistry

August 1999

Fonts and Logos: Font Analysis, Logotype Design, Typography, Type Comparison, and History

June 2001
Leonardo Reviews

Lewis Carroll, Photographer by Roger Taylor and Edward Wakeling. The Princeton University Library Albums. Princeton Univ. Press, Princeton, New Jersey, U.S.A., 2002. 288 pp., illus. Trade. ISBN: 0-691-07443-7

June 2003
Leonardo Reviews

August Sander: People of the 20th Century directed by Reiner Holzemer. First Run/Icarus Films, Brooklyn, NY, U.S.A., 2002. VHS/DVD, 44 mins.

October 2006

Great Artists

August 1999

The Swastika: Symbol Beyond Redemption

June 2001
Leonardo Reviews

Architects + Engineers = Structures

August 2003
Leonardo Reviews

The Hermitage Dwellers directed by Aliona van der Horst. First Run/Icarus Films, New York, 2003. VHS, 73 min., col.

February 2007

Art on Film/Film on Art

August 1999

Distant Shores: The Odyssey of Rockwell Kent

June 2001
Leonardo Reviews

Envisioning Science: The Design and Craft of the Science Image

August 2003
Leonardo Reviews

Hermitage-Niks: A Passion for the Hermitage directed by Aliona van der Horst. First Run/Icarus Films, New York, 2003. VHS, 5 x 25 min., col.

February 2007
Leonardo Reviews

American Venus: The Extraordinary Life of Audrey Munson, Model and Muse

August 2000

The Films of Charles and Ray Eames

August 1999

Ruskin's Journey: Teaching People to See

June 2001
Leonardo Reviews

Geometry of Design: Studies in Proportion and Composition

October 2003
Leonardo Reviews

Klimt, Schiele, Moser, Kokoschka: Vienna 1900 edited by Karen Marie-Amélie zu Salm-Salm. Lund Humphries, Burlington, VT, U.S.A., 2005. 368 pp., illus. Trade. ISBN: 0-85331-934-0

June 2007
General Note

Abbott H. Thayer's Anticipation of a Computer-Based Method of Working

February 2001

The Mathematics of Architecture: Building by Numbers

August 1999

Topsy: William Morris

June 2001
Leonardo Reviews

Lipchitz and The Avantgarde: From Paris to New York

October 2003
Leonardo Reviews

Shigeru Ban: An Architect for Emergencies Directed by Michel Quinejure. First Run/Icarus Films, Brooklyn NY, U.S.A., 2006. VHS/DVD. 52 min. Distributor's web site: 〈http://www.frif.com

June 2008
Book Reviews

Secret Knowledge: Rediscovering The Lost Techniques of the Old Masters

August 2002

Design by Numbers

April 2000

Why Art Cannot Be Taught: A Handbook for Art Students

February 2002
Leonardo Reviews

Design Humor: The Art of Graphic Wit

October 2003
Leonardo Reviews

Forever Directed by Heddy Honigmann. First Run/Icarus Films, Brooklyn NY, U.S.A., 2006. VHS/DVD. 97 min. Distributor's web site: 〈http://www.frif.com

June 2008
Leonardo Reviews

Merz to ÉMigré and Beyond: Avant-Garde Magazine Design of the Twentieth Century

August 2004

Merchant Prince and Master Builder: Edgar J. Kaufmann and Frank Lloyd Wright

April 2000

1000 Extra/Ordinary Objects

February 2002
Leonardo Reviews

Copyright for Collage Artists

February 2004
Leonardo Reviews

The Color Revolution by Regina Lee Blaszczyk. MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, U.S.A., 2012. 368 pp., illus. ISBN: 978-0-2620-1777-0

June 2013
Leonardo Reviews

Problem Solved: A Primer in Design and Communication

August 2005

The New Typography

April 2000

Sullivan's City: The Meaning of Ornament for Louis Sullivan

February 2002
Leonardo Reviews

Fluxus Experience

April 2004
Leonardo Reviews

Taliesin Diary: A Year with Frank Lloyd Wright by Priscilla J. Henken. W.W. Norton, New York, 2012. 272 pp., illus. Trade. ISBN: 978-0-393-73380-8

October 2013
Historical Perspectives on the Arts, Sciences and Technology

The Role of Artists in Ship Camouflage During World War I

February 1999

Masterpieces of Japanese Prints: Ukiyo-e from the Victoria and Albert Museum

April 2000

Light, Darkness, and Colors

April 2002
Leonardo Reviews

Eisenstein: The Master's House

June 2004
Leonardo Reviews

Graphic Design Process: From Problem to Solution by Nancy Skolos and Thomas Wedell. Laurence King Publishing, London, U.K., 2012. 192 pp., illus. Paper. ISBN: 978-1-85669-826-9

October 2013

Composition: A Series of Exercises in Art Structure for the Use of Students and Teachers

February 1999

A Typographic Workbook: A Primer to History, Techniques and Artistry

April 2000

Vincent Van Gogh: Chemicals, Crisis, and Creativity

June 2002
Leonardo Reviews

Howard Finster: Man of Visions

June 2004
General Articles

Seeing through Camouflage: Abbott Thayer, Background-Picturing and the Use of Cutout Silhouettes

February 2018

Don't Touch the Poet: The Life and Times of Joel Oppenheimer

February 1999

Alvar Aalto: Technology and Nature

April 2000

Blast: Vorticism 1914–1918

June 2002