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Modernism What is Modernism ?


odernism is a trend of thought which affirms the power of human beings to make, improve and reshape their environment, with the aid of scientific knowledge, technology and practical experimentation. The term covers a variety of political, cultural and artistic movements rooted in the changes in Western society at the end of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th century. Broadly, modernism describes a series of progressive cultural movements in art and architecture, music, literature and the applied arts which emerged in the decades before 1914. Embracing change and the present, modernism encompasses the works of artists, thinkers, writers and designers who rebelled against late 19th century academic and historicist traditions, and confronted the new economic, social and political aspects of the emerging modern world. By 1930, Modernism had entered popular culture. With the increasing urbanization of populations, it was beginning to be looked to as the source for ideas to deal with the challenges of the day. Popular culture, which was not derived from high culture but instead from its own realities (particularly mass production) fueled much modernist innovation. Modern ideas in art appeared in commercials and logos, the famous London Underground logo being an early example of the need for clear, easily recognizable and memorable visual symbols. One of the most visible changes of this period is the adoption of objects of modern production into daily life. Electricity, the telephone, the automobile and the need to work with them, repair them and live with them created the need for new forms of manners, and social life. The kind of disruptive moment which only a few knew in the 1880’s, became a common occurrence. The speed of communication reserved for the stock brokers of 1890 became part of family life. Modernism is a term used in the aftermath of the 1st world war and the Russian revolution in a period where the artistic avant-grade dreamed of a new world free from conflict, greed and social inequality. The term modernism was used in graphic design itself since around the 19251930, as once economic conditions improved designers had to reassess their work, adapting it to a mass markets, and sometimes even to the demands of fascism. Initially before this time modernism was only largely experimental but then moved from the sketch board to the real world. Modernism has survived for all this time and still remains a powerful force of the design world of today. Modernist graphic design and advertising came to be known as the New Typography and it favoured sans-serif lettering, sometimes without uppercase letters and Typo-Photo in which photographic images were montage alongside type. Also Colour and composition were influenced by abstract paints. In my opinion when it come to Modernism as a whole it can be a bit disturbing in regards to the political side of things and in regards to the way it was used, but when it come to design itself I prefer modernist design only because of the outcome of a particular design, I guess I am attracted to the way they are composition, together, and in order, I generally like that fact that I need to work toward some sort of order grid rule but only to a certain extent. t was in 1930 that modernism reached the pop-culture and young artists was getting published in magazines and newspapers. Artists at this time was for example Piet Mondrian and Salvador Dali.The modernism movement kept growing until around 1980´s when the postmodernism came in to the picture and started a hole new change to the arts and culture.Postmodernism is a reaction to modernism. The times of modernism had done its work and the forms of social organisation was changing. A big change was the development of the information networks that grow to a global scale which meant that ideas, information and images could flow widely around the world. This changed the hole view the world.

Piet Mondrian

Modernism was not conceived as a style but a loose collection of ideas. It was a term which covered a range of movements and styles that largely rejected history and applied ornament, and which embraced abstraction. Born of great cosmopolitan centres, it flourished in Germany and Holland, as well as in Moscow, Paris, Prague and New York. Modernists had a utopian desire to create a better world. They believed in technology as the key means to achieve social improvement and in the machine as a symbol of that aspiration. All of these principles were frequently combined with social and political beliefs (largely left-leaning) which held that design and art could, and should, transform society.

Modernism was not conceived as a style but a loose collection of ideas. It was a term which covered a range of movements and styles that largely rejected history and applied ornament, and which embraced abstraction. Born of great cosmopolitan centres, it flourished in Germany and Holland, as well as in Moscow, Paris, Prague and New York. Modernists had a utopian desire to create a better world. They believed in technology as the key means to achieve social improvement and in the machine as a symbol of that aspiration. All of these principles were frequently combined with social and political beliefs (largely left-leaning) which held that design and art could, and should, transform society.

Modernism: Designing A New World is the first exhibition to explore the concept of Modernism in depth, rather than restricting itself, as previous exhibitions have, to particular geographical centres or to individual decades. Many forms of art and design are represented in the show. But as befits a period when the debates surrounding how people should live took centre stage, the exhibition focuses on architecture and design. The range of objects – including architectural, interior, furniture, product, graphic and fashion design as well as painting, sculpture, film, photography, prints, collage – reflects the period’s emphasis on the unity of the arts and the key role of the fine arts in shaping contemporary visual culture.

Though Modernism had almost become an obsolete form of expression, it did not die out completely, but instead paved the way for Postmodernism which was in many respects, a revision of modernist ideals.

Swiss Style

Swiss Style A new graphic design style emerged in Switzerland in the 1950s that would become the predominant graphic style in the world by the ‘70s. Because of its strong reliance on typographic elements, the new style came to be known as the International Typographic Style.The style was marked by the use of a mathematical grid to provide an overall orderly and unified structure; sans serif typefaces (especially Helvetica, introduced in 1957) in a flush left and ragged right format; and black and white photography in place of drawn illustration. The overall impression was simple and rational, tightly structured and serious, clear and objective, and harmonious.

The style was refined at two design schools in Switzerland, one in Basel led by Armin Hofmann and Emil Ruder, and the other in Zurich under the leadership of Joseph Muller Brockmann. All had studied with Ernst Keller at the Zurich School of Design before WWII, where the principles of the Bauhaus and Jan Tschichold’s New Typography were taught. The new style became widely synonymous with the “look” of many Swiss cultural institutions which used posters as advertising vehicles. Hofmann’s series for the Basel State Theater and Muller Brockmann’s for Zurich’s Tonhalle are two of the most famous.

Hofmann’s accentuation of contrasts between various design elements and Muller-Brockmann’s exploration of rhythm and tempo in visual form are high notes in the evolution of the style. In addition, the new style was perfectly suited to the increasingly global postwar marketplace. Corporations needed international identification and global events such as the Olympics called for universal solutions which the Typographic Style could provide. With such good teachers and proselytizers, the use of the International Typographic Style spread rapidly throughout the world. In the U.S., Hofmann’s Basel design school established a link with the Yale School of Design, which became the leading American center for the new style.

The Grid System, also known as International “Swiss” Style was founded in the 1920’s and become very popular among graphic designers. This was a milestone in the industry.

Helvetica Font

Since its development in 1957 by Swiss typeface designer M a x M i e d i n g er w i th E d ua rd Hoffmann, The Helvetica font has undoubtedly dominated the Typography world with its different font family. A sans-serif typeface, you can see Helvetica font everywhere from posters to Hoardings, from print to web. Even after being on the board for more than half a century, it is still showing no signs of retiring from Typeface world.

Helvetica was placed at number one on Font Shop Germany’s list “Best Fonts of All Time”. This font has various versions like Cyrillic, Light, Greek, Condensed, Inserat, Textbook, Rounded and, Neue etc and each version has got love and appreciation from all over the world. If you want to create professional printout, you should consider a commercial font. Free fonts often have not all characters and signs, and have no kerning pairs.

Before actually buying the font, lets have a look at history of Helvetica font and its versions. Helvetica name is derived from Helvetia, the Lati n nam e for Switzerland. New weights were added by the Stempel f o u n d r y L a t e r, M e r g a n t h a l e r L i n o t y p e added new versions. The Cyrillic version was designed in-house in the 1970s at D. Stempel AG, then critiqued and redesigned in 1992 under the advice of Jovica Veljovic.

Matthew Carter designed the Helvetica Greek, Helvetica Light was designed by Stempel’s artistic director Erich Schultz-Anker, in conjunction with Arthur Ritzel.

Max Bill

F r o m 1 9 2 4 t o 1 9 2 7 Max Bill trained as a silversmith at the Zurich “Kunstgewerbeschule”. Subsequently he studied at the Dessau Bauhaus under Josef Albers, Wassily Kandinsky, Paul Klee and others. In 1929 Max Bill moved to Zurich, where he worked as an architect, painter, graphic artist and sculpturist and later also as a product designer. Bill’s versatile work was dominated by painting, beginning initially with landscapes and portraits until taking on his own independent character, from around 1931 onwards, with the use of consistent geometric-constructive abstraction.

After working on graphic designs for the few modern buildings being constructed, he built his first work, his own house and studio (1932–3) in Zurich-Höngg.From 1937 onwards he was a prime mover behind the Allianz group of Swiss artists. Bill is widely considered the single most decisive influence on Swiss graphic design beginning in the 1950s with his theoretical writing and progressive work.His connection to the days of the Modern Movement gave him special authority. As an industrial designer, his work is characterized by a clarity of design and precise proportions.

From 1932 to 1936 Max Bill was a member of the Parisian group of artists “Abstraction-Création”. In 1933 he held his first exhibition at the group’s gallery. During repeated sojourns to Paris he developed friendships with Hans Arp, Piet Mondrian and Auguste Herbin. In 1936 Bill formulated the Principles of Concrete Art, as a refinement of the ideas published by Theo van Doesburg. Bill is one of the most important exponents of this art genre.

Examples are the elegant clocks and watches designed for Junghans, a long-term client. Among Bill’s most notable product designs is the “Ulmer Hocker” of 1954, a stool that can also be used as a shelf element or a side table. Although the stool was a creation of Bill and Ulm school designer Hans Gugelot, it is often called “Bill Hocker” because the first sketch on a cocktail napkin was Bill’s work ..

In 1937 he worked on a monograph on Le Corbusier and entered the association of modern Swiss artists “Allianz”. In 1944 Bill founded the jo u r n a l “a b s t r akt kon kret”. H e also organized an exhibition in the Basel “Kunsthalle” under the same title and obtained a teaching position to teach “Formlehre” (theory of form) at the Zurich “Kunstgewerbeschule”.

As a designer and artist, Bill sought to create forms which visually represent the New Physics of the early 20th century. He sought to create objects so that the new science of form could be understood by the senses: that is as a concrete art. Thus Bill is not a rationalist -as is typically thoughtbut rather a phenomenologist. One who understands embodiment as the ultimate expression of a concrete art. In this way he is not some much extending as re-interpreting Bauhaus theory. Yet curiously Bill’s critical interpreters have not really grasped this fundamental issue. He made spare geometric paintings and spherical sculptures, some based on the Möbius strip, in stone, wood, metal and plaster.

His formative years were spent at the Bauhaus under the tutelage of Kandinsky, Klee and Joseph Albers; he exhibited work in Paris alongside Jan Arp and Mondrian; and also forged strong links with British modernists Ben Nicholson and Barbara Hepworth. In 1953 he founded the prestigious Ulm School of Design with Inge Aicher-Scholl and Otl Aicher. Bill died in Berlin in 1994 . His architectural work included an office building in Germany, a radio Bill was a professor at the Staatliche studio in Zurich, and a bridge in Hochschule für Bildende Künste eastern Switzerland . Hamburg and chair of Environmental Design from 1967 to 1974. In 1973 he He continued to produce architecbecame an associate member of the tural designs, such as those for a Royal Flemish Academy of Science, museum of contemporary art (1981) Literature and Fine Art in Brussels. in Florence and for the Bauhaus ArIn 1976 he became a member of the chive (1987) in Berlin. In 1982 he Berlin Academy of Arts. In addition to also entered a competition for an adhis teaching, Bill wrote and lectured dition to the Neue Nationalgalerie in extensively on art, architecture and Berlin, built to a design by Mies van design, appearing at symposiums der Rohe . and design conferences around the world. In particular, he wrote books about Le Corbusier, Kandinsky, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, and artistic theory .

Armin Hofmann

Ar min Hofmann was bor n on June 29, 1920 in Winterthur, Switzerland. He did his apprenticeship in lithography and studied at Kunstgewerbeschule in Zürich. When Hofmann was 26 years old, he began his teaching career at the Allgemeine Gewerbeschule (AGS) in Basel. Hofmann and Ruder established an advanced class for graphic design at the AGS that brought great attention from all over the world. Hofmann role as a graphic designer. His works included posters, logos, exhibitions, color concepts, signage systems and art-inbuilding projects. His posters are implacable and timeless. The abstract forms create an ambiguity and yet curiosity. His black and white posters are profound. He said, “A primary in black and white posters is to counteract the trivialization of color as it exists today on billboards and in advertising.”.

The style of design they created had a goal of communication above all else, practiced new techniques of photo-typesetting, photomontage and experimental composition and heavily favored sans-serif typography. Hofmann has been described as one of the most outstanding personalities in Swiss graphic design history. Hofmann helped shape modernistinspired graphic design beyond recognition. Without ‘The International Typographic Style’, also known as the Swiss Style of design, contemporary graphic design would be almost unrecognisable. The readability and cleanliness of the style as well as its asymmetric layouts, use of a grids and sans-serif typefaces have helped define how we design today. Designers today are still taking the best elements from this era of design to create a whole new contemporary, visual aesthetic .

The style of design that Hofmann and Ruder created aspired to communication above all else. It showed new techniques of photomontage, photo typesetting, experimental composition in general and of course heavily favoured sans-serif typography. It could be said that Hofmann devoted his entire professional life to bringing a creative and artistic integrity to the world of graphic design. Hofmann’s work, especially his poster designs, always seemed to emphasize an economical and efficient use of colour and typefaces. This was in reaction to what Hofmann called the “trivialization of colour.” His posters have been exhibited as works of art in major galleries all around the world, including the New York Museum of Modern Art. He retired in 1987 but his legacy lives on in his hugely influential body of work.

Joseph Müller-Brockmann

Josef Müller-Brockmann was a Swiss graphic designer and teacher. He studied architecture, design and history of art at both the University and Kunstgewerbeschule in Zurich. In 1936 he opened his Zurich studio specialising in graphic design, exhibition design and photography.Müller-Brockman was author of “The Graphic Artist and his Design Problems”, “Grid Systems in Graphic Design” , the publications “History of the Poster” and “A History of Visual Communication”.He is recognised for his simple designs and his clean use of typography, notably Helvetica, shapes and colours which inspires many graphic designers in the 21st century.

Joseph Müller-Brockmann was influenced by the ideas of several different design and art movements including Constructivism, De Stijl, Suprematism and the Bauhaus. He is perhaps the most wellknown Swiss designer and his name is probably the most easily recognized when talking about the period. He was born and raised in Switzerland and by the age of 43 he became a teacher at the Zurich school of arts and crafts. Perhaps his most decisive work was done for the Zurich Town Hall as poster advertisements for its theater productions. He published several books, including The Graphic Artist and His Problems and Grid Systems in Graphic Design.

These books provide an in-depth analysis of his work practices and philosophies, and provide an excellent foundation for young graphic designers wishing to learn more about the profession. He spent most of his life working and teaching, even into the early 1990s when he toured the US and Canada speaking about his work. He died in Zurich in 1996. The new style became widely synonymous with the “look” of many Swiss cultural institutions which used posters as advertising vehicles. Hofmann’s series for the Basel State Theater and MullerBrockmann’s for Zurich’s Tonhalle are two of the most famous.

Müller-Brockmann was more than just a man who sought to form what is now labeled the Swiss School; Constructivism, De Still, Suprematism and the Bauhaus, all of which pushed his designs in a new direction that opened doors for creative expressions in graphic design, influenced him. Among his peers he is probably the most easily recognized when looking at that period.

The grid system is an aid, not a guarantee. It permits a number of possible uses and each designer can look for a solution appropriate to his personal style. But one must learn how to use the grid; it is an art that requires practice. Josef Muller-Brockmann

Adolphe Mouron Cassandre

Adolphe Jean-Marie Mouron was born in the Ukraine, he moved to Paris in 1915. After studies in fine art, he designed sets and costumes for the theatre. He is now regarded as one of the most influential poster artists of the 20th century. His typographic and poster designs were central to Art Deco graphics. He designed two well-known typefaces. Bifur is a very bold capitals only typeface with a distinct Bauhaus look. His more famous typeface is Peignot Light, which is named after Charles Peignot who commissioned both typefaces and was a major promoter of innovation in typography. Cassandre became successful enough that with the help of partners he was able to set up his own advertising agency called Alliance Graphique. Serving a wide variety of clientele, during the 1930s, his creations for the Dubonnet wine company were among the first posters designed in a manner that allowed them to be seen by occupants in fast-moving vehicles. His posters are memorable for their innovative graphic solutions and their frequent denotations to such painters as Max Ernst and Pablo Picasso. In addition, he taught graphic design at the Ecole des Arts Décoratifs and then at the Ecole d’Art Graphique. Cassandre believed he had returned to a purer form of design and that he had captured the “essential character” of the roman alphabet. Unfortunately for Cassandre, it was a failure as a text typeface though much in demand for decorative purposes. He also designed the logo for Yves St Laurent. Sadly, he committed suicide in 1968. With the onset of World War II, Cassandre served in the French army until the fall of France. His business long gone, he survived by creating stage sets and costumes for the theatre, something he had dabbled in during the 1930s. After the war, he continued this line of work while also returning to easel painting. In 1963, he designed the well-known Yves Saint-Laurent logo. His symbols and letters had the ability, in a single or repeated image, to appeal with both immediacy and sophistication. They also suggest modern advertising techniques that stress transformation as a result of using a product as in “before” and “after” comparisons. He also believed that he had returned to a purer form of design and that he had captured the “essential character” of the roman alphabet.

Adolphe Mouron Cassandre’s YSL Logo

Adolphe Mouron Cassandre designed the iconic “YSL” logo in December 1961, whilst Yves was at the helm. Born in 1901, Cassandre was heavily influenced by cubism and surrealism and designed a number of bold typefaces including the Bifur in 1929, the sans serif, Acier Noir in 1935, and an all purpose font called Peigot in 1937 as well as striking posters and covers for Harper’s Bazaar. He fought in the French army against the Germans in World War II and worked as a painter and costume and set designer for theatre until his suicide in Paris in 1968.

Alexey Brodovich

He was a Russian emigrant photographer and designer who worked in Paris, then America, at the beginning of the twentieth century. He went on to become the art editor for Harper’s Bazaar. He is considered to be one of the most influential 20th century designers in the field of graphic design. His contribution to contemporary magazine design while art director of Harper’s Bazaar would be sufficient enough to honor Alexey Brodovitch as a pioneer in graphic design, but his influence was much greater. He was one of the first to introduce European modernism of the1920s to the United States both by his own work and by commissioning art and photography from leading European artists and photographers, including A.M. Cassandre, Salvador Dali, Henri Cartier-Bresson and Man Ray. Through his lifelong dedication to teaching, he created a generation of designers who shared his belief in visual vitality and immediacy. Fascinated with photography, he fostered an expressionistic approach that became the dominant photographic style of the 1950s. Born in Russia in 1898, Brodovitch fled the Bolsheviks in 1920 with his family and future wife and settled in Paris. Brodovitch’s design career flourished in 1924 after his poster design for Le Bal Banal, a benefit dance for poor artists, was selected over many other artists including Pablo Picasso. Soon he was in great demand, designing fabric, jewelry, restaurant décor, posters and department store advertisements.Invited to the United States in 1930 to start an advertising art department at the Philadelphia Museum School of Industrial Art, Brodovitch began his teaching career while completing numerous freelance assignments. In 1934, Carmel Snow, the new editor of Harper’s Bazaar, saw his design work and immediately hired him to be its art director. It was the beginning of a 24 year tenure that would revolutionize both fashion and magazine design. By the 1950s, Brodovitch had perfected his style of combining text and photography with copious amounts of white space. Despite his easily recognizable work, Brodovitch did not formulate a theory of design. “There is no recipe for good layout,” he said. “What must be maintained is a feeling of change and contrast. A layout man should be simple with good photographs. He should perform acrobatics when the pictures are bad.” Henry Wolf, Brodovitch’s successor at Harper’s Bazaar, commented on his unique approach to magazine layout. “Oh, of course he was a good designer and superb typographer and had an innate sense of elegance about space,” Wolf said. “But his layouts were done only as approximations. He stood in the middle of the room and, with a scissor, cut out photostats which he taped to a piece of paper. Others later straightened them. It was communicating an idea, a mood, a criticism that he was precise and masterful.” Besides his achievements at Bazaar, Brodovitch’s legacy as a publication designer included the influential but short-lived Portfolio. Only three issues were published in 1950 and 1951. An innovative quarterly aimed at the design profession, Portfolio contained vividly illustrated features on Alexander Calder, Charles Eames, Paul Rand, Saul Steinberg and others. It also contained the work of pioneering photographers, many of whom were Brodovitch’s students. As art editor, Brodovitch helped determine the magazine’s contents, and created its distinct design with the help of elaborate devices such as die-cuts, transparent pages and multi-page foldouts. Those three issues are considered by many to be the pinnacle of Brodovitch’s design. He continued to teach throughout his career. His Design Laboratory, which he began in 1941 at the New School for Social Research in New York, focused on illustration, graphic design and photography. As a teacher, Brodovitch was considered harsh in his criticism but inspiring, and his student list reads like a who’s who of visual communication, including photographers Irving Penn, Richard Avedon, Art Kane and Hiro, and art directors Bob Gage, Helmut Krone and Steve Frankfurt.

Paul Rand

He was a well known American graphic designer, best known for his corporate logo designs. Rand’s education included the Pratt Institute (1929–1932), the Parsons School of Design (1932–1933), and the Art Students League (1933–1934). He was one of the originators of the Swiss Style of graphic design. From 1956–1969 and beginning again in 1974, Rand taught design at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut. Rand was inducted into the New York Art Directors Club Hall of Fame in 1972. He designed many posters and corporate identities including the logos for IBM and ABC. In an interesting way the chronology of Paul Rand’s design experience has paralleled the development of the modern design movement. Paul Rand’s first career in media promotion and cover design ran from 1937 to 1941, his second career in advertising design ran from 1941 to 1954, and his third career in corporate identification began in 1954. Paralleling these three careers there has been a consuming interest in design education and Paul Rand’s fourth career as an educator started at Cooper Union in 1942. He taught at Pratt Institute in 1946 and in 1956 he accepted a post at Yale University’s graduate school of design where he held the title of Professor of Graphic Design.

In 1937 Paul launched his first career at Esquire. Although he was only occasionally involved in the editorial layout of that magazine, he designed material on its behalf and turned out a spectacular series of covers for Apparel Arts, a quarterly published in conjunction with Esquire. In spite of a schedule that paid no heed to regular working hours or minimum wage scales, he managed in these crucial years to find time to design an impressive array of covers for other magazines, particularly Directions. From 1938 on his work was a regular feature of the exhibitions of the Art Directors Club. Most contemporary designers are aware of Paul Rand’s successful and compelling contributions to advertising design. What is not well known is the significant role he played in setting the pattern for future approaches to the advertising concept. Paul was probably the first of a long and distinguished line of art directors to work with and appreciate the unique talent of William Bernbach. Paul described his first meeting with Bernbach as “akin to Columbus discovering America,” and went on to say, “This was my first encounter with a copywriter who understood visual ideas and who didn’t come in with a yellow copy pad and a preconceived notion of what the layout should look like.”

Design is the method of putting form and content together. Design, just as art, has multiple definitions,

there is no single definition. Design can be art. Design can be aesthetics. Design is so simple, that’s why it is so

complicated. Paul Rand

Bradbury Thompson

Bradbury Thompson (1911-1995) was truly one of the giants of 20th-century graphic design, and was recognized for his achievements by every major American design organization: National Society of Art Directors of the Year Award (1950), AIGA Gold Medal Award (1975), Art Directors Hall of Fame (1977) In 1983, he received the Frederic W. Goudy Award from RIT. A wonderful essay published by the Art Directors Club asks: “How did he become ‘architect of prizewinning books, consulting physician to magazines,’ pre-eminent typographer, designer of stamps, multiple medalist? It all started in Topeka..

Another triumph came with the publication of The Washburn College Bible, the most monumental and innovative reassessment of bible typography since Gutenberg’s own edition appeared in 1455. Some ten years in the making, the WCB presented the text in cadenced phrases, such that its meaning for both reader and listener was conveyed through typography. Set in Jan Tschichold’s Renaissance-flavor typeface Sabon and featuring chapter openings with beautiful reproductions of paintings based on biblical stories, the WCB respects the long and inspiring history of this sacred Christian text even as it breaks new ground.

He was born in 1911 in Topeka, where he attended Washburn College, graduating in 1934. After a brief period as a designer at Capper Publications, where he thoroughly learned every aspect of printing production, Thompson moved to New York in 1938. Over the next sixty-some years he unfurled an astonishing talent and embraced every graphic design opportunity he could. He worked as art director at the RogersKellogg-Stillson printing firm and then at Mademoiselle magazine, consulted and designed for Westvaco Corporation, designed a new alphabet, and began a teaching career at Yale University, where he stayed for many years.

A third area of interest was contemporary postage stamp design. Though credited officially with more than 90 stamps of his own, he consulted with the U.S. Postal Service in guiding the design of many others. Many of his designs became iconic snapshots of American history and culture, including the famous “Learning never ends” stamp of 1980 with its colorful Josef Albers painting, and the irrepressibly jaunty “Love” stamp of 1984.

His career was marked by many triumphs, but three stand out prominently as exemplars of his versatility. As the designer of more than 60 issues (1939-62) of Westvaco Inspirations, a promotional magazine p u b l i s h e d b y t h e We s t v a c o P a p e r Corporation, he reached many thousands of typographers, print buyers, and students. He had an uncanny ability to merge and blend modernist typographic organization with classic typefaces and historic illustrations, all seasoned with affectionate sentiment and impeccable taste. Working with modest resources, he saw himself as teacher and guide: “The art of typography, like architecture, is concerned with beauty and utility in contemporary terms... the typographic designer must present the arts and sciences of past centuries as well as those of today And although he works with the graphics of past centuries, he must create in the spirit of his own time, showing in his designs an essential understanding rather than a labored copying of past masters.” (from Westvaco Inspirations 206, 1956).

Bradbury Thompson died in 1995 as one of the most genuinely admired and influential graphic designers of the 20th century. RIT’s Thompson collection is a sample collection and was donated by Dodge Thompson in 2000. To create well is to teach; it is useless to inquire whether Brad Thompson has been more influential from the classroom or the studio. Certainly there is at least a Masters thesis in tracing out Thompson’s impact merely through the pages of Inspirations, and lucky is the student who has access to a complete file, almost thirty years of an enormously creative periodical. Bradbury Thompson’s mark is impeccable taste applied with great elegance an elegance of simplicity, wit, and vast learning and an intimate knowledge of the process of printing, always with style, with informed taste. A postal service badly in need of style and taste found them in Thompson’s “American Music” and in a series of commemoratives such as “Lafayette,” as well as in Christmas stamps for several seasons. His mark is on the Harvard Business Review, Smithsonian, and thirty or more other periodicals; on the Time-Life Foods of the World and Library of Art series, on the superb books he designed The Bible, the Tales of Edgar Allen Poe, and the writings of Thomas Jefferson, among so many.

His mark is upon us, too, in his respect for the reader and the reader’s intelligence— good manners in art direction and design. The glitter and shine of tinsel will never again look so attractive to one whose eye has been led by Bradbury Thompson, with his respect for us, for his materials, and for the letters of the alphabet. hompson had a very strong background in printing and a passion for design, Thompson blasted onto the design scene. His avantgarde approach to design and ability to make something out of nothing captured the attention of his fellow designers. His many contributions to the design world earned him both respect and awards. Bradbury Thompson helped to influence our perceptions of design and artistry which can be seen in designer’s work today. During World War II there was a convergence between image and word and this was mostly driven by Bradbury Thompson’s designs for the “Inspirations” of the time. Thompson’s influence spread around the country via the Westvaco Inspirations. Everyone in the design world, from other graphic designers to advertising agencies; even museums, received the catalogues. Those that read their copies would take the designs, paper stocks and printing processes they saw into consideration while designing. Thompson’s designs could also be seen by the average person through his magazine and journal designs. I n fact, many of the magazines he worked on transformed under Thompson’s presence. Thompson won many awards – such as Art Director of the Year, the AIGA Gold Medal award and was inducted into the Art Directors Hall of Fame.

Saul Bass

Saul Bass was a great 20th-century American graphic designer, who created the corporate image and memorably stunning logos for numerous American companies. Saul Bass was, first and foremost a pioneering 1950s Hollywood designer, the founder of conceptual cover design, who created the motion picture title sequences and posters for a great many films. Saul Bass developed a simplified, symbolic design language that visually communicated all the essential elements of a film. Bass designed emblematic posters that made a stunning visual impact, thus revolutionizing animated film graphics and the visuals of film advertizing. Born in the Bronx, Saul Bass was given a scholarship to the Art Students League in 1936. From 1944 until 1946 Saul Bass studied at Brooklyn College. He worked in New York as a f re e l a n c e c o m m e rc i a l a r t i s t for advertizing agencies and companies, including Warner Bros. In 1946 Saul Bass went to Los Angeles, where he continued to work as a commercial artist. By 1952 he had a practice of his own, which was registered from 1955 as Saul Bass & Associates. As an advertising designer he endowed similar extensions of form and perception to products other than motion pictures. With deftly coordinated combinations of advertising and product packaging, he transformed the corporate image into a cohesive personality, poised to seduce the consumer. During his 40-year career he worked for some of Hollywood’s greatest filmmakers, including most notably Alfred Hitchcock, plus Otto Preminger, Stanley Kubrick and Martin Scorsese. His most famous title sequence is probably the animated paper cut-out of a heroin addict’s arm for Preminger’s The Man with the Golden Arm. Saul Bass designed the 6th AT&T Bell System logo, that at one point achieved a 93 percent recognition rate in the United States. He also designed the AT&T “globe” logo for AT&T after the break up of the Bell System.

Herb Lubalin

He was a prominent American graphic designer who collaborated with Ralph Ginzburg on four of Ginzburg’s magazines: Eros, Fact Magazine, Fact and Avant Garde and was responsible for the creative visual beauty of these publications. He designed a typeface, ITC Avant Garde, for the last of these; this distinctive font could be described as a post-modern interpretation of art deco, and its influence can be seen in logos created in the 1990s and 2000s. He also published and designed the famous typography periodical u&lc. Herb Lubalin entered Cooper Union at the age of seventeen, and quickly became entranced by the possibilities presented by typography as a communicative implement. During this period Lubalin was particularly struck by the differences in interpretation one could impose by changing from one typeface to another, always “fascinated by the look and sound of words (as he) expanded their message with typographic impact. After graduating in 1939, Lubalin had a difficult time finding work; he was fired from his job at a display firm after requesting a two dollar raise on his weekly salary. Lubalin would eventually land at Reiss Advertising, and later worked for Sudler & Hennessey, where he served as art director for twenty years, eventually taking on the roles of vice president and creative director before leaving to start his own studio. Lubalin spent the last ten years of his life working on a variety of projects, notably his typographic journal U&lc and the newly founded International Typographic Corporation. U&lc (shorthand for Upper and Lower Case) served as both an advertisement for Lubalin’s designs and a further plane of typographic experimentation; Steven Heller argues that U&lc was the first Emigre, or at least the template for its later successes, for this very combination of promotion and revolutionary change in type design. Heller further notes, “In U&lc, he tested just how far smashed and expressive lettering might be taken. Under Lubalin’s tutelage, eclectic typography was firmly entrenched.”[4] Lubalin enjoyed the freedom his magazine provided him; he was quoted as saying “Right now, I have what every designer wants and few have the good fortune to achieve. I’m my own client. Nobody tells me what to do.”

Herb Lubalin is best known for his logotypes, or as he called them ‘expressive typography’. One of his most famous works is the Mother & Child masthead he designed for a Curtis magazine, where the ‘O’ in the word mother is a womb for the word child. The use of the ampersand in this design is pure genius.

Most people recognize the name Herb Lubalin in association with the typeface Avant Garde. And he was the typographer and designer behind its creation, after the success of Avant Garde Magazine and its typographic logo. But, his career spanned a much wider scope than that. One of the people behind the culture-shocking magazines Avant-Garde, Eros and Fact, he was a constant boundary breaker on both a visual and social level. Part of the founding team of the International Typeface Corporation (ITC) and the principal of Herb Lubalin, Inc it was hard to escape the reach of Herb during the 1960s and 70s. His constant search for something new and a passion for inventiveness made him one of the most successful art directors of the 20th century. He had offices internationally in Paris and London and partnered with many talented individuals over the years including Aaron Burns, Tom Carnase, Ernie Smith and Ralph Ginzburg. A graduate of the Cooper Union in New York he spent time as a visiting professor there as well as designed a logo for them. Constantly working and achieving much success throughout his career, at the age of 59 he proclaimed “I have just completed my internship.”

Milton Glaser

Milton Glaser is among the most celebrated graphic designer in the Un it e d S t a t e s . H e h a s h a d the distinction of one-man-shows at the Museum of Modern Art and the Georges Pompidou Center. In 2004 he was selected for the lifetime achievement award of the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum. As a F u l b r i g h t sc h o l ar, G l a se r studied with the painter, Giorgio Morandi in Bologna, and is an articulate spokesman for the ethical practice of design. He opened Milton Glaser, Inc. in 1974, and continues to produce an astounding amount of work in many fields of design to this day. Is best known for his “Bob Dylan” poster, the I Love New York logo, and the “DC bullet” logo used by DC Comics from 1977 to 2005. Glaser was educated at New York City’s High School of Music and Art , graduated from the Cooper Union in 1951 and later, via a Fulbright Scholarship, the Academy of Fine Arts in Bologna under Giorgio Morandi. In 1954 Glaser was a founder, and president, of the Push Pin Studios formed with several of his Cooper Union classmates. Glaser’s work is characterized by directness, simplicity and originality. He uses any medium or style suggested by the picture problem - from primitive to avant garde - in his design for book jackets, record album covers, advertisements and direct mail pieces, as well as for magazine illustrations. He started his own studio, Milton Glaser, Inc., in 1974. This led to his involvement with an increasingly wide diversity of projects, ranging from the design of New York Magazine, of which he was a co-founder, to a 600 foot mural for the Federal Office Building in Indianapolis. Throughout his career he has had a major impact on contemporary illustration and design. His work has won numerous awards from Art Directors Clubs, the American Institute of Graphic Arts, the Society of Illustrators and the Type Directors Club. In 1979 he was made Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and his work is included in the Museum of Modern Art, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Israel Museum and the Musee de l’affiche in Paris. Glaser has taught at both the School of Visual Arts and at Cooper Union in New York City.

Pushpin Studios In 1954, Milton Glaser, along with Reyonld Ruffins, Seymour Chwast, and Edward Sorel, founded Pushpin Studios. For twenty years Glaser, together with Seymour Chwast, directed the organization, which exerted a powerful influence on the direction of world graphic design, culminating in a memorable exhibition at the Louvres Museum of Decorative Arts in Paris. New York Magazine In 1968, Glaser and Clay Felker founded New York magazine, where Glaser was president and design director until 1977. The publication became the model for city magazines, and stimulated a host of imitations. WBMG In 1983, Glaser teamed with Walter Bernard to form WBMG, a publication design firm located in New York City. Since its inception, they have designed more than 50 magazines, newspapers and periodicals around the world. WBMG has been responsible for the complete redesigns of three major newspapers: The Washington Post in the U.S., La Vanguardia in Barcelona, and O Globo in Rio de Janeiro. It has consulted on design projects for The Los Angeles Times, The Boston Globe, The Dallas Times Herald, The East Hampton Star, the New York Daily News and the National Post (Canada). Magazine clients in the United States include: Time, U.S. News & World Report, Adweek, Brill’s Content, Crain’s Chicago Business, Family Circle, Golf Digest, The Nation, Autoweek, Biography, USA Weekend, PC Magazine andWine Spectator. WBMG has created original prototype designs for Manhattan, Inc., Windows, The Journal of Art, and ESPN, the Magazine. In Europe, WBMG has developed and created the original format for Alma (a women’s service magazine) and Zeus (a cultural newspaper). The firm has redesigned L’Express, Lire (a French literary magazine), Jardin des Modes (women’s fashion), L’Espresso in Rome and Business Tokyo in Japan. WBMG has also designed the American Express Annual Report for three years, as well as several books, including Steve Salmieri’s Cadillac and Muhammad Ali: Memories for Rizzoli and ESPN’s SportsCentury for Hyperion. Walter and Milton are co-creators of “Our Times”, an illustrated history of the 20th century, published in 1995.

Post Modernism

Post Modernism and History

Post modernism comes in many guises and many varieties,and it has had many kinds of positive influences on historical scholarship. It has encouraged historians to take the irrational in the past more seriously,to pay more attention to ideas, beliefs and culture as influences in their own right, to devote more effort to framing our work in literary terms, to put individuals, often humble individuals, back into history, to emancipate ourselves from what became in the end a constricting straitjacket of socialscience approaches, quantification and socio-economic determinism.

so the person making it does have access to the truth.If texts are given meaning by the reader and not the writer, then why have so many postmodernists complained that when I have criticized them I have been basing my criticisms on a misrepresentation of what they have written Presumably post modernists believe that the texts they are writing are not capable of an infinity of interpretations, that they make their meaning unmistakeably clear so that the reader is left with only one way of interpreting it. Again, therefore, the post modernist proposition refutes itself.

But this is post modernism in its more moderate guise. The literature on post modernism usefully distinguishes between the moderate and the radical. What I call radical postmodernism takes its cue from another post, post-structuralism, roughly speaking the idea that language is arbitrarily constructed, and represents nothing but itself, so that whenever we read something,the meaning we put into it is necessarily our own and nobody else’s, except of course insofar as our own way of reading is part of a wider discourse or set of beliefs.

All of these points are in the end fairly obvious. Post modernism of the Jenkins/Munslow variety shows what one might call a naivecynicism that is too simple-minded to cope with doubt and imperfection. Let me illustrate this by looking at the concept of Truth, a term one usually finds in poststructuralist writings placed inside a cordon sanitaire of quotation marks, as if it would cause some horrible infection of old-fashioned empiricism in the writer or reader if it was let out.

It must be obvious that this idea has a corrosive effect on the discipline of history, which depends on the belief that the sources the historian reads can enable us to reconstruct past reality. It is just thisidea that many post-structuralists have attacked. Alan Munslow, for example,proclaims: ‘The past is not discovered or found. It is created and represented by the historian as a text.’ Keith Jenkins believes that ‘history is just ideology’.’ And Hans Kellner complains that historians‚ ’routinely behave as though their researches were into the past, as though their writings were about “it”, and as though “it” were as real as the text which is the object of their labours.’The past is unknowable; all we can know about is historians’ writings, so history disappears and we are left with historiography as a species of literary endeavour. What historians write depends on their own purposes and their own point of view, and there is no way of deciding whether one representation of the past is true and another, contradictory one, untrue. Arguments such as these are extremely self-contradictory,however. If the statement, commonly made by post modernists, that truth is always relative to a particular society or culture or group in society, is true, then it is true in an absolute sense, not a relative one, since as a statement, it must hold good for all societies and cultures. Similarly, when postmodernists claim that nobody has access to the truth, they must believe that this is in fact a true statement,

Of course it is right to say that we can never know the whole or absolute truth about anything in the past. But just because we can never attain the whole or absolute truth, just because we make mistakes in our search for the truth about the past, just because there will always be something new to say about any historical subject, it does not follow that there is no such thing as the truth at all. In a similar way, just because what is accepted as true isn’t necessarily so, does not mean that the concept of the truth itself is merely ideological. Truth, as I noted earlier, is not relative to perspective, though what is accepted as true is; ‘a statement is true if and only if things are as it represents them to be.’ So there cannot be incompatible truths; after all, ‘incompatible’ actually means ‘cannot be jointly true’. So if we claim that there is no such thing as truth, then either that statement is true, in which case there is such as thing as truth, or it is not true, which amounts to the same thing. The point is, of course, that postmodernists passionately want us to believe that what they are saying is true and objective, even when they say that nothing anybody says is true and objective. You’ll notice that I’ve finally introduced the term ‘objective’ here. This has been the source of a lot of confusion. It does not mean the same as absolutely, completely and irrefutably true, and post modernists who say it does, are setting up a target deliberately manufactured to be able to knock over without too many problems.

Objectivity does not really havethis strong meaning, however; it generally means, fairly obviously, a perspective or representation deriving from something external to the mind, the object,rather than from the mind of the person doing the representation, the subject. We see a car coming towards us as we’re crossing the road, and we recognise it as an object, so we jump out of its way. The evidence that it’s coming is provided by our senses, sight and hearing, possibly also smell, though hopefully it’s not such a close call that we have to involve touching and feeling as well. When we read a historical document, or look at an archaeological site, we can’t read into it, or see in it, anything we want to. We can read it for a variety of purposes and in a variety of ways, but the possibilities are not unlimited. We bring to our sources all kinds of theories, ideas, beliefs, questions, and the more conscious we are of them, the better, but what happens when all of this comes into contact with the sources is a dialogue, a two-way process, not the simple one-way imposition of our own views on a blank sheet of paper or an empty piece of ground. We can argue about what the sources tell us, but it’s not the case that one interpretation is always going to be as good as another; some are more persuasive than others because they achieve a better fit with the evidence, and sometimes, some are actually right and others wrong. The point here is that it is not really possible to distinguish so sharply between fact and interpretation in history as this. There’s an element of interpretation, however small, involved in the establishment of even the most basic historical facts. It’s not in practice possible to draw a clear line between fact and meaning in history; rather, it’s a sliding scale, so that the larger the fact, or ensemble of facts, the historian wants to establish, the larger the element of interpretation involved. The ultimate test of any historical statement is the extent to which it fits with the evidence, but just because no fit is ever perfect, just because no fact can be established as anything more than an overwhelming probability, doesn’t mean that we can naively and impatiently discard all historical statements as mere inventions of the historian.Let’s have a bit of subtlety and sophistication here, qualities that post modernists are always urging us to adopt.

Post modernism is an abundant resource for inspiration for graphic design. The most obvious is by referencing images from history but most importantly by applying the modus operandi. Using the post modernist method in design you can create effective posters and graphic design that incorporate all the strong elements that have been tested by time rather than using limited personal knowledge to guess at the best result.

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What is Post Modernism art ?

Basel New wave


Basel New wave started in 70s, 80s and originatd from Basel, Switzerland wIts art style includes Loosening up loose forms, informality, photographic & electronic technologies ,Layered text & photography. Its attitude was the Advancement of Modernist principles, Recycled Modernist styles and techniques .

Memphis is an Italian Design & Architecture firm Started by Ettore Sottsass ,In Milan, Italy. It is developed from the from creativity and constant rejection of functional design in Italy during the seventies,linked to cartoon like furnitures and textiles. Its attitude of art: Function became secondary. Visual Characteristics includes exaggerated geometric forms .Ettore Sottsass ,in the 1980s refocused his designs to Cartoon-like, pastel-coloured and strongly affected graphic design in different countries until today.


European new wave

Zurich is a style developed from a method of typographic collage that gives the viewer an illusion of involvement in the design process.Originated from Zurich, Switzerland in the 1980s.Its visual Characteristics based on geometrics, Simplicity, use of white space and primary colors, Typographic collage .

Originated from France, Holland.French graphic designers developed an effective visual language of solid graphic forms and modified hand lettering.Style became sophisticated over the years with layered photography, intricate typographical and pictorial designs, and unique color and black and white experiment.

Post modern art

American Post modernism


Post modern art is used to describe an art movement which was thought to be in contradiction to some aspect of modernism. Post-modernism often embodied complexity, contradiction, ambiguity and unresolved diversity. Movements such as intermedia, installation art, conceptual and multimedia. Particularly involving media are described as post modern. The traits associated with the use of the term postmodern in art include collage, simplification, appropriation etc, a return to traditional themes and techniques as a rejection of modernism. One characteristic of postmodern art is its conflation of high and low culture through the use of industrial materials and pop culture imagery.The term postmodern, has come to apply to a distinctive international style, based not on stereotypes but on the somewhat hap hazard confluence of various theories and practices of individual designers worldwide.

Prevailing trends in architecture have traditionally influenced typographic and pictorial styles. In light of the increased creative interplay today between architects and interior and graphic designers, it is not surprising that an architectonic style of graphics has come to typify the American Post Modern style. The style is influenced by Architectural, typographic, and pictorial. Because of the increased creative interplay between architects and interior and graphics .Architectonic of graphics has come to typify the amerian post modern style. American Post-Modernism started in the 1980s,originated New York, Houston.

Using the post modernist method in design you can create effective posters and graphic design that incorporate all the strong elements that have been tested by time rather than using limited personal knowledge to guess at the best result.

American Punk

American New Wave

Like other 20th century youth movements, current youth culture has invented it’s own dominant design language. As signals of rebellion, comics are mainstays of the new style, and the basic primitivism of the collage technique helped to express an essential rawness. Collage was therefore the preferred artistic method during the early stages of Punk, and it was ultimately refined as a mainstream design technique.American Punk originated from New York. Its visual characteristics are: Collage, Comic. It includes elements of irony, absurdist, humor and genuine suspicion of mainstream culture and values.

American New Wave is a art movement during Late 60’s, 70’s- 80’s, Originated from New York, San Francisco. It experimented with New Optics & Computersand kinetic quality designs. Designers who studied in Switzerland during the late 60s and 70s returned to the USA to practice what they had learned. Their works, however, did not reflect rational design influence of earlier generations. They went against the fundamental principles of legibility and attempted to define a current graphic vocabulary. Visual Characteristics includes Graphic Imagery Reflects the Contemporary Fetish or Products of the Material, Commercial, and High-Tech Culture.

The different styles happened around the same time in the 1960s to 1980s but at different parts of the world .Styles usually are born from ideology and culture .It is often the result of men’s need to create something new from the old,,simply either out of boredom thus feeling the need to rebel.Although the different graphic styles appear to be distinctive and different, There is actually a similar point, which is that they wanted to rebel. They experimented with new ways of pictorial and typographical execution, and thus a new style was born . Post modernism is any of several movements that are reactions against the philosophy and practices of modern art movements and are typically marked by revival of traditional elements and techniques. Post modernity is the derivative to refer to non-art aspects of history that were influenced by the new movement . The term is closely linked with poststructuralism (Jacques Derrida) and with modernism, in terms of a rejection of its bourgeois and elitist culture.Post wmodernism is characterized by the abandonment of strong divisions of genre and “high” and “low” art .

Post Modernism and Digital Graphic Design

The digital revolution of 1980s and development of various computer design softwares such as Fontographer (1986), QuarkXPresss (1986) and Adobe Illustrator (1986-87) and other more advanced packages, opened new vistas and possibilities for visual representation of concepts, and information that could easily incorporate and manipulate both texts and images.

By 1990, most design studios were equipped with Apple Macintosh computers. Young designers were competing with type designers, text editors, and digital film-makers. The avant-garde, San Francisco-based Emigre magazine published by the Czechoslovakian-born art director Zuzana Licko, and her spouse the Dutch-born Rudy Vanderlans, was one of the first print-media created on Macintosh computers. Emigre was a platform to lunch the career of many postmodern designers including; Edward Fella, Neville Brody, Anne Burdick, Steve Tomasula, Susan LaPorte, and Michael Worthington. Emigre magazine was published a total of 69 issues, usually irregularly, over the years between 1984 and 2005. Similarly, a group of young artists, established the multidisciplinary studio Tomato, in London in 1991 creating music videos and flashing typographic experiments.

It was now possible for the designers to see the previews of the adjustments they were making, experiment with various visual patterns, explore and discover new spatial and compositional arrangements; and gain new insights from such experiments. These softwares allowed the designers to cut, clip, paste, move and rearrange a composition, change the color scheme, distort the shape, introduce various visual effects, and a plethora of other technical capabilities. The development of the Internet, that became consumer friendly in the mid 1990’s, was even more fortunate, as the electronic graphic design became globalized and designers could, gather, sift and sort the vast amount of visual information generated in cyberspace to harness their imagination and create stunningly authentic designs. It allowed for interactive design and an effective collaboration among designers across the globe to work and create together in partnerships that could not have otherwise existed. wAs well it provided new ways of distributing traditional design mediums, such as advertising.

When the Emigre’s images and lettering was criticized as “loud and blaring, not neat and crisp,” The reply was, “the onus is on the reader to stretch their visual literacy to understand the designers.” Emigre folded in 2005. Swiss designers Cornel Windlin and Gilles Gavillet, created a a poster for an exhibit on computer games, entitled Game Over. Using a computer game design software, the poster divided the face of a die into four cells, with each cell depicting one letter of the word “OVER”. The entire design project was done on a computer.

However, the rise of the virtual world also heralded the death of traditional printed materials by the post-modernist designers who were inclined toward devaluation of all values, including the value of ‘authenticity’. In fact, the very term ‘authentic’ in the new virtual world was the very definition of inauthentic in the Popperian rational world. The new fonts were typically ornate, but often difficult to read. This rebellious act was denying not only the relevance of rational modernity, but sometimes even the relevance of legibility itself. As Grunge type designer Carlos Segura, the founder of the controversial type shop T.26, who admired Japanese typography because “they do inject much more calligraphy and art into their typography than most Westerners do,” has said,

Since 1990 ,Western designers have been open to an eclecyic range of Post modern styles.There has also been a greater acceptance of the use of vernacular material such as street art, comics,and other non-traditional graphic media.Because graphic design successfully established itself as an artistic profession during the modern period,post modern designers hitherto had rejected.Also ,as large corporations attempt to develop corporate identities that transcnd political and ethnic boundaries,there have been serious efforts to creat globally effective design campaigns.Marketers came to appreciate the sense of human warmth and authenticity conveyed by experimental, vernacular work as it became clear that some consumers found crisp modern styles to be cold and off putting. Together with the rapid development in digital technology, these changes amount to a revolution in the graphic design industry. Postmodernism in graphic design for the most part has been a visual and decorative movement. Many designers and design critics contend that post modernism, in the literary or architectural sense of the term, never really impacted graphic design as it did these other fields. Alternatively, some argue that it did but took on a different persona.This can be seen in the work produced at Katherine McCoy’s program at the Cranbrook Academy of Art in Michigan during the late 1980s to late 1990s and at the MFA program at CalArts in California.

Typography is beyond letters. Some fonts are so decorative, they almost become ‘visuals’ and when put in text form, they tell a story beyond the words a canvas is created by the personality of the collection of words on the page .

But when all was said and done, the various notions of the post modern in the various design fields never really stuck to graphic design as it did with architecture. Some argue that the “movement” (if it ever was one) had little to no impact on graphic design. More likely, it did, but more in the sense of a continuation or re-evaluation of the modern. Some would argue that this continuous re-evaluation is also just a component of the design process - happening for most of the second half of the 20th century in the profession. Since it was ultimately the work of graphic designers that inspired pop artists like Warhol and Liechtenstein, and architects like Robert Venturi and Denise ScottBrown, it could be argued that graphic design practice and designs may be the root of Post modernism.Graphic design saw a massive popular raising at the end of the seventies in form of Graffiti and Hip Hop culture’s rise. Graphic forms of expression became a vast everyday hobby among school kids all around the developed western countries. Alongside this ‘movement’, that took rebellious and even criminal cultural forms, was born the mass hobby of coding computer graphics. This phenomenon worked as a stepping stone towards the graphic infrastructure that is applied in the majority of computer interfaces today.

John Baldessari

The American artist John Baldessari rose to prominence in the late 1960s, combining Pop art’s use of mass media imagery with Conceptual art’s use of language to create a unique body of work that has become a hallmark of postmodern art. Early in his career, Baldessari began incorporating images and text utilized by the advertising and movie industries into his photo-based art. He appropriated pictures and movie stills, juxtaposing, editing and cropping them in conjunction with written texts. The resulting montage of photography and language often counters the narrative associations suggested by the isolated scenes and offers a greater plurality of meanings. The layered, often humorous compositions carry disparate connotations, underscoring how relative meaning can be. Throughout his long and celebrated career, Baldessari has continued to play with and critique popular culture, and over time he has increased the scale and visual impact of his work. This publication looks at new works Baldessari created on commission for the Deutsche Guggenheim.

John Baldessari’s practice explores ideas around communication. Some of his signature works are conceptual juxtapositions of text and images that demonstrate the enormous associative power of language in the way that art is interacted with and understood. His works have paired statements with found photographs to humorously exploit the game-like way in which narrative can be arbitrarily created by language and visuals. A crucial development in Baldessari’s work was the introduction of text to his paintings. It marked, for him, the realization that images and texts behave in similar ways - both using codes to convey their messages. Text began to disappear from his work in the early 1970s, and since then he has generally relied on collage, but his work has continued to operate with the same understanding of the coded character of images. Typically, he collages together apparently unrelated categories of image or motif, yet the result is to force us to recognize that those images often communicate similar messages.

El Lissitzky

He was a Russian born artist, designer, typographer, photographer and architect who designed many exhibitions and propaganda for the Soviet Union in the early 20th century. His development of the ideas behind the Suprematist art movement were very influential in the development of the Bauhaus and the Constructivist art movements. His stylistic characteristics and experimentation with production techniques developed in the 1920s and 30s have been an influence on graphic designers since. In his early years he developed a style of painting in which he used abstract geometric shapes, which he referred to as “prouns�, to define the spatial relationships of his compositions. The shapes were developed in a 3-dimensional space, that often contained varying perspectives, which was a direct contrast to the ideas of suprematist theories which stressed the simplification of shapes and the use of 2D space only. He moved around in the 1920s and spent time in both Germany as a cultural representative of Russia and, after he was diagnosed with pulmonary tuberculosis, Switzerland in a Swiss sanatorium. But this never stopped him from working as he continued to produce propaganda posters, books, buildings and exhibitions for the Soviet Union. in 1932 Stalin demanded that artists conform to much stricter guidelines or be blacklisted, Lissitzky managed to retain his position as head of exhibitions. In 1941 his tuberculosis overcame him and caused his death.

Jamie Reid

Jamie Reid is an English artist and anarchist with connections to the Situationists. His work, featuring letters cut from newspaper headlines in the style of a ransom note, came close to defining the image of punk rock, particularly in the UK. His best known works include the Sex Pistols album Never Mind the Bollocks, Here’s the Sex Pistols and the singles “Anarchy in the UK”, “God Save The Queen” (based on a Cecil Beaton photograph of Queen Elizabeth II, with an added safety pin through her nose and swastikas in her eyes, described by Sean O’Hagan of The Observer as “the single most iconic image of the punk era”) “Pretty Vacant” and “Holidays in the Sun”.

Reid’s design for the Sex Pistols’ “Anarchy in the U.K.” poster a ripped and safety-pinned Union Flag is regarded as the pivotal work in establishing a distinctive punk visual aesthetic.He was educated at John Ruskin Grammar School in Croydon. With Malcolm McLaren, he took part in a sit-in at Croydon Art School. Jamie Reid created the ransom-note look used with the Sex Pistols graphics while he was designing Suburban Press, a radical political magazine he ran for five years.

The way in which Reid uses cut-out newspaper text is meant to link back to the idea of ransom notes which came rather close to being the definition of design during the punk rock era, particularly in the UK .Reid’s work mainly focuses on the problems of our world and gives form to some of the key issues of our time. He responds in a way to events that some people may find offensive and some even too scared to say it themselves.

Following the Pistols’ end in 1978 and the demise of the British punk scene, Reid continued to work as an artist, infusing his work with his political leanings. He’s worked with various artists to protest nuclear weapons, racism and a fairer criminal justice system. For much of the 1980s and ‘90s, Reid worked with the world music group Afro Celt Sound System.

Wolfgang Weingart

In his work, Weingart demonstrates his mastery of typographic rules and the meaning achieved in breaking them. His career is one of curiosity and experience, aptitude rather than learning, and of ordered experiment and visual enjoyment. Looking at the complete output of Weingart’s work suggests neither pessimism nor traditionalism. In his earliest experiments, Weingart created abstract patterns with type, and went beyond the unconventional almost to the absurd. But these explorations produced an evolution, a tangible esthetic, and a deep appreciation of typography, all of which are evident throughout Weingart’s work. Weingart’s manifesto, entitled Is This Typography Worth Supporting Or Do We Live On The Moon shows his mastery of layered type on tinted panels. The technique reappears in color in the early 1980s posters for Kunstkredit, a cultural organization based in Basel, where he uses a film montage technique combined with multilayered dot screens. Such designs would have been almost impossible to create in letterpress, and their use of sizes, spacing, and color defy the ideas of the Swiss typographic tradition enshrined at the Basel school. Weingart’s success as a teacher and as a designer stems from both joy and judgment. His evident pleasure at discovering new possibilities, and in helping students to discover their own potential, is matched only by his knowledge of the technical aspects of his craft. Weingart is an example of how knowledge and imagination can work together creatively. By breaking the traditional rules of typography, Weingart shows his wit, wisdom, and understanding, which has lead to discovery and revelation.

When Weingart became a teacher at Basel in 1968, the postgraduate course he proposed and taught was a radical departure from the principles of order, clarity, pattern and rhythm taught by Emil Ruder. Weingart’s class became an international success. Weingart believed that the tradition of Swiss typography played an important international role from the fifties until the end of the sixties, but had become sterile and anonymous. His vision was to breathe new life into the teaching of typography by re-examining the assumed principles of its practice. The only way Weingart was able to break the rules of typography was to know them. He had his students experiment with the limits of legibility and repetition, based on his own experiments. He also learned the skills of photolithography, developing new concepts, masking and overlaying films, and using the camera to distort, enlarge, or blur type. Weingart’s success as a teacher and as a designer stems from both joy and judgment. His evident pleasure at discovering new possibilities, and in helping students to discover their own potential, is matched only by his knowledge of the technical aspects of his craft. Weingart is an example of how knowledge and imagination can work together creatively. By breaking the traditional rules of typography, Weingart shows his wit, wisdom, and understanding, which has lead to discovery and revelation.

April Greiman

April Greiman was a designer in New York City in the mid-1970s when she decided to leave the comfort of a design community deeply entrenched in European tradition for an uncertain future on the opposite coast. Seeking a new spirit, she moved to Los Angeles and entered a culture that, for better or for worse, had a limited aesthetic of its own at that time. Museums and galleries were few and it was impossible to get a decent cup of coffee. But the lack of an established design practice created a unique opportunity to explore new paradigms in communications design. April Greiman is regarded as one of the most influential designers of the digital age. She has been called a pioneer in this regard, making it acceptable for a graphic designer to explore their craft using a computer. In 1984, computers were seen by much of the public as science fiction props, specialized industry tools, or subverted novelties. The design community regarded them as an embarrassment to the long history and craft of an art form. By experimenting with typography and image placement, in direct contrast to the rigid swiss grids of the past, New Wave postmodernists challenged the notion of modernist ordering systems and asked designers to experiment with the artistic possibilities that lay beyond the grid. April’s work in particular is often identified for its 3D, spatial qualities that provide a unique experience to the viewer. Challenging every convention in the industry, even the term ‘graphic design,’ which she feels is too limiting, April prefers to be called a ‘trans-media artist.’ In 1982, CalArts invited her to direct its graphic design program. where she began to incorporate the new digital media in her designs. She was among the pioneers of the computer graphic design, and in 1984 she was the main force behind the department’s name change to Visual Communications, as she recognized that “graphic design” has been altered dramatically in the new digital age. Later that year she became a student again, and acquired her first Macintosh with Quantel Paintbox to study the effect of digital design on her own work. Her book “Hybrid Imagery: The Fusion of Technology and Graphic Design” was published in 1990.

It makes sense if you give it sense.I love this notion which exists in physics as well—that the observer is the observed, and the observed is the observer. The tools and technologies begin to dictate what and how you see something, or how the outcome is predictable. These ideas bring back the kid in me, that very pure curiosity.”

In 1985 “Design Quarterly” invited Grierman to design an issue about her work. She raised to the occasion with a unique piece which heralded the coming of the new digital age. Instead of creating a standard thirty-two-page sequence, she created a giant poster that folded out to almost three by six feet. On the front it was the digitized image of her own naked body, amidst of layers of interacting images and text. On the back, a virtual landscape of text and image incorporated colorful atmospheric spatial video images which were interspersed with thought provoking statements. . Impressed by the idea of the Observer Created Reality in quantum physics, her poster for Design Quarterly “Does It Make Sense?” widely considered bit-mapped type and imagery not only unorthodox but unacceptable, straying too far from the clean, crisp precision of the Intermational Style. The computer itself was viewed as cold and unfriendly, wildly expensive, and a harbinger of the demise of fine design. After the publication of Design Quarterly 133, many designers felt compelled to reconsider the role of the computer in design practice. Greiman’s willingness to ask the question, and to place it at the center of the design community, triggered countless debates about computers, context, and creativity

Greiman warmly recalls receiving a phone call from Massimo Vignelli soon after he saw the poster. “I have just one question,” he said. “When do I get the other side?” A Modernist’s query? Perhaps, but more clearly an indicator of the departure Greiman had made from the coolly classical to the intensely personal, poetic, and digital, and in particular of the giant step that she had boldly taken into what had been very much a man’s world. Greiman sees herself as a natural bridge between the Modernist tradition and future generations of designers. Given her classical education at KCAI and graduate studies with Hoffman and Weingart at Basel, she possesses the knowledge and skills of the Modernist tradition. And yet she is a vocal advocate of the new aesthetic, defending both the visual and conceptual aesthetics, as well as new technologies, to skeptics. “In the tradition of graphic design in the twentieth century, you had to be either a great typographer, a great designer/illustrator, or a great poster designer. Now we are confronted with motion graphics, the World Wide Web, and interactive applications. The world has changed and the field is changing to meet it.” Greiman is adamant that we must be open to new paradigms, to new metaphors, to a whole new spirit of design: “It’s not just graphic design anymore. We just don’t have a new name for it yet.”

P aula Sc h er

Paula Scher is an American graphic designer, illustrator, painter and art educator in design, and the first female principal at Pentagram, which she joined in 1991.Scher creates images that speak to an audience with emotional impact and appeal. The images she has created have become visually identical with the culture of New York City. She has developed brand and identity systems, promotional materials, packaging, environmental graphics, and publication designs for a range of clients.She is the 16th recipient of the School of Visual Art’s Masters Series Award and an exhibition of her work can be seen at the Visual Arts Museum & School of Visual Arts, which ties in with her book, Make it Bigger. Scher has developed identities, packaging for a broad range of clients that includes, among others, The New York Times Magazine, Perry Ellis, Bloomberg, Target, Jazz at Lincoln Center, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, the New 42nd Street, the New York Botanical Garden, and The Daily Show With Jon Stewart. In 1996 Scher’s widely imitated identity for the Public Theater won the coveted Beacon Award for integrated corporate design strategy. She serves on the board of The Public Theater, and is a frequent design contributor to The New York Times, GQ and other publications.

In 1998 Scher was named to the Art Directors Club Hall of Fame, and in 2000 she received the prestigious Chrysler Award for Innovation in Design. She has served on the national board of AIGA and was president of its New York chapter from 1998 to 2000. In 2001 she received the profession’s highest honor, the AIGA Medal, in recognition of her distinguished achievements and contributions to the field. She is a member of the Alliance Graphique Internationale. Her work is represented in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art and the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, New York; the Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.; the Museum für Gestaltung Zürich; the Denver Art Museum; and the Bibliothèque nationale de France and the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris. Scher began her career creating album covers for both Atlantic and CBS records. However, it was not long before she formed her own design company, and after only a few years there she joined Pentagram. During her career she has created memorable identities and other work for clients such as Citi Bank, Coca-Cola, the Metropolitan Opera, the Museum of Modern Art and the New York Philharmonic, among others.

Neville Brody

Neville Brody is a London born designer who studied design in Britian during the 1970s. He spent three years studying at the London College of Printing where his work, which was quite experimental in nature, was met with quite unfavorable criticism because the school generally taught traditional printing methods.

He gained a fair amount of attention as an art director for The Face magazine, where he worked from 1980 to 1993. The magazine was very popular in the 1980s, it was called a “fashion bible� and set many of the trends of design which enjoyed success during the same time period.

In 1994 he formed Neville Brody Studio, now Research Studios, which has enjoyed much success and has since expanded to include offices in London, Paris, Berlin and Barcelona He is a founding member of the London based type foundry Fontworks and has designed over 20 different typefaces during his career.

He was also a major contributor to FUSE, which was a publication about the practice of experimental typography and was an avid user of the computer as a design tool during its developmental stages.

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David Carso n

He was born at 8th September 1954 in Texas America. He is famous for typography and Magazine Art. Perhaps he is well known and the best Graphic Designer of 1990`s. He traveled many cities from US to Europe to get proficiency in his field. His first Graphic Design that got actual popularity was made at University of Arizona. He also joined San Diego State University and Oregon College of Arts. This design was made during two week course. He has recently names as the most talented Graphic Designer of USA. After he designed some Magazines like Ray Gun Magazine, Lifestyle and Music Magazine, David decided to run his own firm which was named as David Carson Design Currently calling New York his base of operations, Carson was born in Corpus Christi, Texas and spent much of his early life in southern California where he was a high school teacher before becoming a designer.

Ingrained within the surfing sub-culture of southern California, Carson started experimenting with graphic design during the mid 1980s. Not only a designer, in 1989 he has qualified as the 9th best surfer in the world. His interest in the world of surfing gave him the opportunities to experiment with design, working on several different publications related to the profession.Transworld Skateboarding, Beach Culture, How Magazine and RayGun were among the primary publications on which he worked. However, it was RayGun where he gained perhaps the most recognition and was able to share his design style, characterized by “dirty� type which adheres to none of the standard practices of typography and is often illegible, with the widest audience. After the success of RayGun, and press from the New York Times and Newsweek, he formed his own studio. David Carson Design was founded in 1995 and is still home to Carson and his work .

Barbara Kruger

Barbara Kruger was born on January 26, 1945, in Newark, New Jersey. She spent a year at Syracuse University in 1964 and a semester at Parsons School of Design in New York in 1965, where she studied with Diane Arbus and graphic designer Marvin Israel. In 1966, she took a job with Condé Nast, working in the design department of Mademoiselle. She was named that magazine’s head designer a year later. For the next decade, Kruger supported herself doing graphic design for magazines, book jacket designs, and freelance picture editing. In the late 1960s, she also developed an interest in poetry, attending readings and writing. Kruger’s earliest artworks date to 1969. Large woven wall hangings of yarn, beads, sequins, feathers, and ribbons, they exemplify the feminist recuperation of craft during this period. Despite her inclusion in the Whitney Biennial in 1973 and solo exhibitions at Artists Space and Fischbach Gallery, both in New York, the following two years, she was dissatisfied with her output and its detachment from her growing social and political concerns. In the fall of 1976, Kruger abandoned art making and moved to Berkeley, California, where she taught at the University of California for four years and steeped herself in the writings of Walter Benjamin and Roland Barthes. She took up photography in 1977, producing a series of blackand-white details of architectural exteriors paired with her own textual ruminations on the lives of those living inside. Published as an artist’s book, Picture/Readings (1979) foreshadows the aesthetic vocabulary Kruger developed in her mature work. By 1979, Kruger stopped taking photographs and began to employ found images in her art, mostly from mid-century American print-media sources, with words collaged directly over them. Untitled (Perfect) (1980) portrays the torso of a woman, hands clasped in prayer, evoking the Virgin Mary, the embodiment of submissive femininity; the word “perfect” is emblazoned along the lower edge of the image. These early collages, in which Kruger deployed techniques she had perfected as a graphic designer, inaugurated the artist’s ongoing political, social, and especially feminist provocations and commentaries on religion, sexuality, racial and gender stereotypes, consumerism, corporate greed, and power.



Mast Head

The masthead is usually based at the top of the magzine cover with the biggest font which can be read from a distance. The font size is normally larger than the cover lines, and the colour of the masthead is different to the cover line colours to make sure it stand out. The masthead colour co ordinates with the image. It is normally the firstt thing that you would see in a magzine cover after the main picture.By looking at the masthead you can tell that the magazine is for women.

Strapline The strapline is based at the top of the magzine, just above the masthead . The language that is used in the strapline makes the reader want to open the magazine and find out more on the story.

Strapline Analysing Magazine Front Cover

Strapline Main Cover Lines The main cover line is smaller than the masthead but larger that the other cover lines . The font colour is the same as the other cover lines but it is written in bold near the masthead . It is meant to be the eye catching cover line. After having read the masthead the readers eyes will go straight down to the main cover line.It is the biggest typeface on the page (apart from the masthead) and in black on the white cover ,next to the models so that is stands our clearly.

Cover Lines Cover lines also known as ‘puffs’ tell us the stories that are in the magazine. The colour of the cover lines is the same as the main cover line but the font is smaller to make the main cover line stand out .There are quite a few cover lines which are spread around the magazine cover. They are normally the last thing that is read .The language that is used in the cover lines are used so the reader want to open the magazine and read on. This particular cover line suggests that the magazine is for adult women.

Image The image plays an impotant role as it represents the ideal reader. It is the first thing a reader would see on the cover. It needs to be able to stand out from a whole range of magazines in the shop and grab the audiences attention.This image of the model is conventional for this genre of magazines. She looks straight out at the audience ( direct mode of address ) in a confident manner with a friendly smile rather than a proactive way , reinforcing the notion that the magazine is a friend.

Masthead Main cover line

Direct Mode of Puff/cover lines


A grid is a skeletal framework used by designers to organize information within a spatial field . It is a system characterized by the dualities of freedom and constraint, simplicity and complexity. It provides a strategy for composing text and other visual information in two and three dimensional space, including those of printed materials,film,computer screens,built environments,and typographic installations.Grid systems aid designers in making information clear and optimally accessible highly desirable traits in a world increasingly inundated by visual noise. when used effectively , typographic grids provide form and space with proportional harmony and aesthetic beauty.The final result is clearer and more accessible communication.

Grid Systems

A typographic grid is a two -dimensional structure made up of a series of intersecting vertical and horizontal axes used to structure content.The grid serves as an armature on which a designer can organize text and images in a rational,easy to absorb manner. A grid system is a rigid framework that is supposed to help graphic designers in the meaningful, logical and consistent organization of information on a page. Rudimentary versions of grid systems existed since the medieval times, but a group of graphic designers, mostly inspired in ideas from typographical literature started building a more rigid and coherent system for page layout. The core of these ideas were first presented in the book Grid Systems in Graphic Design by Josef M端ller-Brockmann which helped to spread the knowledge about the grids thorough the world.

Type of Grids

A manuscript grid is the most basic form of a grid. It is made up by a single rectangle that defines the margins of the format.

Grid Examples

A column grid is what it says. It splits the page into columns, and is probably the most used grid type. Libraries like blueprint and 960. gs have ported the ideas of the column grid to the web.

Using a Grid

The last type of grid is often called a hierarchical grid, although it’s kind of a “catch all� for grids that do not fit into the above categories. A hierarchical grid is described by not having equal spacing between modules.

The modular grid is a column and row grid that not only tells you the x-placements of your forms, but also guides on the y-axis.

The grid systems were made popular with the wave of Swiss Style graphic design. The point is to work creatively within the grid, but also break free when you need it.Even a simple grid gives you a lot of variety in placing your content. You use the modules as basis for larger content areas. This creates alignment and balance in your design.

example of grid style on magazine

My Mast head design

Mast head Development

New Graphic Design

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My Cover Design with pictures

My Cover Design with my own designs in Illustrator


my research

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