A Victorian New Year's Eve Card (via Bolton Council)

A Victorian New Year’s Card (via Bolton Council)

A new year is about to dawn. Have you considered the calendar which will guide you through the great unknown that awaits in the next 12 months? Sure, you could just use your iPhone’s calendar, but why limit yourself to that uninspired digital app with all the beautiful and strange design offerings out there. Here are 10 recommendations for your 2016 calendar choice.

NYC Art Handlers Calendar

NYC Art Handlers 2016 (via Etsy)

“Snap on your nitrile gloves and remember to lift with your legs for 17 of the finest fine art handlers in Tri-State area.” The NYC Art Handlers calendar returns for 2016 with an even more revealing tribute to the good people who keep art on the move. Posed with their tools of the trade — lasers, drills, packing peanuts — the calendar has all the glamor of a sweaty late-night gallery install. The majority of its proceeds go to support the Bowery Mission and Fund for Lamjung (Nepal Earthquake Relief). [Etsy, $15]

Unsolicited Advice 2016

Unsolicited Advice 2016 (via Adam J. Kurtz)

Sure wall calendars are great, but what about the portable planner you carry into the battle of finishing something, anything, against the continuous procession of time? Artist and author Adam J. Kurtz designed his Unsolicited Advice 2016 planner/journal with helpful handwritten tips like “Go to bed what are you even doing right now???” and “Practice drawing smiley faces instead of sobbing!” to drag you through each day. [Adam J. Kurtz, $14]

Cats Let Nothing Darken Their Roar

Cats Let Nothing Darken Their Roar Calendar (via Cooper Hewitt)

Now in its 11th edition, the Cats Let Nothing Darken Their Roar calendar by Helsinki-based designer Noa Bembibre has a new round of surreal phrases embedded with the names of the month. “Majestic Yawn” hides May, and “An Ode to the Celestial Numbers” reveals December, each of the 12 months being its own limited-edition typographic poster. [Cooper Hewitt, $45]

Freedom for Political Prisoners Calendar

Freedom for Political Prisoners Calendar (via Justseeds)

The Certain Days: Freedom for Political Prisoners Calendar isn’t just a measure of time, it’s a piece of activist art. This year’s theme is “Internationalism, Solidarity, and Global Struggle,” featuring art by Jess X Chen and Melanie Cervantes of Justseeds along with other political artists. Their work is joined by text on current political imprisonment issues, making it a multidimensional awareness tool. [Justseeds, $12]

Isometric Risograph Calendar

Isometric Risograph Calendar (via Paper Pusher)

The Isometric Risograph Calendar by artist Jp King is a love letter to mid-century design, with Risograph printing in retro fluorescent colors on individual pages of Kraft paper involving a different geometric image each month. Perfect for hanging alongside your Eames chair (or your IKEA “knockoff”). [Paper Pusher, $24]

Butterflies of Titian Ramsay Peale

Butterflies of Titian Ramsay Peale 2016 Wall Calendar (via AMNH)

Earlier this year, the American Museum of Natural History published Titian Peale’s The Butterflies of North America, an illustrated manuscript of lepidoptery that had gone unseen for 130 years. Some of these 19th-century watercolor and gouache images are now featured in a 2016 calendar, with Peale’s original annotations still visible on each month’s page. [American Museum of Natural History, $14.99]


Anaptár (via Anagraphic)

More a beautiful work of data visualization than just a chronicle of the months, the poster-size Anaptár by Anna Farkas with the Hungary-based Anagraphic is a circular graphic of our changing place in the universe. With editions customized to major cities like New York, London, and Berlin, you can find the day on the outside, then work your way in to see that moment’s lunar phrases, sunrise, constellations, all beautifully shaded to emphasize how time is just an interpretation of our Earth’s movement amongst the stars. [Anagraphic, €35.43 ($38)]

CMYK Color Swatch Calendar

CMYK Color Swatch Calendar (via Verlag Hermann Schmidt)

For each day of the year on the CMYK Color Swatch Calendar, you can tear off a color swatch, creating a constantly-evolving weekly palette. Created by Germany-based designer Peter von Freyhold, it even includes a collecting box with binding screws to group together preferred hues, each marked with their correct CMYK values for your reference. [Verlag Hermann Schmidt, €39.80 ($43)]

The Imagined Desks of Historical Women

The Imagined Desks of Historical Women Calendar (via Dear Hancock Paper Goods)

California-based Dear Hancock Paper Goods has dreamed up fantastically colorful workspaces for Georgia O’Keeffe, Frida Kahlo, Mary Shelley, Ray Eames, and others in their Imagined Desks of Historical Women calendar. For instance, the cover shows a fictional desk for Sonia Delaunay, the bright whirls of her modernist art consuming both sketches on the wall and her coat, a coffee cup, lamp, and hat jauntily perched nearby. [Dear Hancock Paper Goods, $16]

Stendig Calendar

Stendig Calendar (via Schoolhouse Electric & Supply Co.)

If all else, you can’t go wrong with a classic, and the only calendar worthy of inclusion in the Museum of Modern Art’s Design Collection. The 1966 Massimo Vignelli calendar, updated for 2016, is still as crisply designed 50 years later, with perforated sheets tearing off to reveal months in black then white, all in Helvetica, of course. [Schoolhouse Electric & Supply Co., $40]

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Allison Meier

Allison C. Meier is a former staff writer for Hyperallergic. Originally from Oklahoma, she has been covering visual culture and overlooked history for print...