Monday, December 7, 2015

art chantry's low tech approach to graphic design

chantry builds his record, poster, and magazine designs by hand, eschewing the now-ubiquitous computer and laser printer for X-acto knives, Xerox machines, and photoset type.

it's all about about low tech,

who says design cannot change the world?

For now, Poster Boy and his movement is doing his part to fight De$ign.

Postmodern satire: Heeeeere's is The Onion

For the Onion's history click here.

Then, there's Spy!

Now with Kurt Andersen's selection of covers.

Rick Valicenti

Rick Valicenti formed Thirst in 1989 as the evolution of a career already eight years under way. I can think of no other body of work by any designer that has the amount of strength that Rick’s does, while simultaneously plundering the depths of style and defying uniformity (...) Often otherworldy, and sometimes dripping in political or social commentary, Valicenti and Fisher rode in tandem to fame partly on these electric, visceral pieces. And it is worth noting that bike enthusiasts—not just designers—remember these pieces from a time when personality in product as well as promotion was both appreciated and desired. What Rick forms with his clients is a relationship, what they give him is trust, and what results is a personal conversation which draws on all of their experiences and fuses the boundaries between expression and promotion. While each individual piece may at times seem bizarre, slick, cold or inscrutable, the work as a whole has continuity, love, passion and depth. While Rick's style has been emulated, the essence of his work has rarely been repeated (Marian Bantjes, AIGA's Medalists).

Monday, November 30, 2015

your turn #11 (what would the history of the poster look like without polish school's contribution?)

circus, viktor gorka, 1968

The stars of the Polish School of the 1960s and 1970s: Starowieyski, Lenica, Cieślewicz,  Wałkuski, Bodnar, Gorka, Tomaszewski, Zameczni, Świerz, Polka, Trepkowski. 

What do you think?*

* I briefly referred to Polish cinema and theater as part of the cultural explosion going on in Poland during the 1960s &1970s: Take a look at Jerzy Grotowski's amazing theater (I only found this youtube documentary in French and translated into Italian). Another Polish theater iconoclast I forgot to mention is Tadeus Kantor (here a portrait in English). Kantor and Grotowski's so-called "traumatic theater" have influenced contemporary theater all over.
For Polish Cinema of the 1960s: A list of films and directors. Watch Andre Wajda's Ashes and Diamonds. Arguably the best realist Polish film. A masterpiece. 
The grisly murdered of Sharon Tate (then Polanski's wife here).
Jan Lenica's Labyrinth (1963).

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

your turn #10

r. crumb, 1960s

Kula Robbins' Jenny On The Job, Advertising, Pre-Logo years, Fortune Magazine, Anton Stankowski, George Giusti, The International Typographic Style: Huber, Armin Hoffman's vector fonts, Müller-Brockmann's rational order, Paul Rand, Saul Bass, Chermayeff & Geismar, Logo History. What's in a LOGO?

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

your turn #9

anton stankowski, 1950s

there is plenty to talk about in this rich period mid1930s- mid1950s: modern designstars, piet zwart (master of de stijl), piet mondrian's contribution to modern design, the one and only master of preWWII elegance, a. cassandreladislav sutnar (the neue typographie standardizer), herb lubalin (the laconic master of positive/negative), the avangardist ted mcknight koffer, the exquisite moods of cipe pineles,  saul bass' groundbreaking collaborations with o. preminger and a. hitchcock, the inimitable alvin lustig. then we have WWII posters (both sides of the war) and a brief analysis of propaganda.
pick what you like and spin it.  

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

your turn #8

this famous alan aldridge poster for chelsea girls has its surreal twang

We talked about Surrealism (within the context of graphic design), WWI and WWII posters, and the star émigrés of the New York School: Binder, Beall, Matter Brodovitch, Agha (more to come). For better or worse, they changed the direction of modern graphic design. 

Monday, October 26, 2015

your turn #7

Natalia Goncharova. In A Game in Hell: A Poem (Igra v adu: Poema), 1912

We've covered an amazing chunk of history: Cubism, Expressionism, Constructivism, Neue Typographie, Futurism and Dadaism. At each step of the way I've tried to connect these developments and techniques to graphic design, only now, graphic = a mark and design = the possibility of a mark in a space

Yesterday, I reiterated this idea of typeface as the smallest graphic experimentation unit. So,
Typeface  =  line (drawing) =  floor plan (architecture) = chair (furniture) = string quartet (music) = monologue (theater) = pirouette (dance).      

What's on your mind?
pS: I said that Johannes Itten was a director @ the Bauhaus. Not exactly. He was director at the Kunstgewerbeschule, and one of the masters at the BAUHAUS faculty. Gropius, Meyer and Mies (in this order) were directors are BAUHAUS.  My lapse and my apologies. :)

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

your turn #6

kandinsky, improvisation #19, 1911

plakatstil, klinger, werkbung, gesamkunstwerk, new typography, adolf loos & ornament, blue rider, expressionist woodcuts, schmidt rottluff!

Monday, October 5, 2015

your turn #5

toorop, dalende gevolen, 1894

Chéret, L'art pour l'art, Art Nouveau, Decadence, Viennese Secession, Beardsley, Toorop, Lebeau, Mucha, Delville, van de Velde, Delville. Pick your favorite.

Monday, September 28, 2015

your turn #4

edward steichen, portrait of marlene dietrich (early 1930s)

this post is ongoing with the forthcoming info (of next monday class). remember i close the comment box early next wednesday morning.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

your turn #3

photography (daguerrotype), photography as hobby, monsieur nadar, freaks!, pictorialism, designing circus, the civil war illustrator, erotica.

Monday, September 14, 2015

your turn #2

hypnerotomachia poliphili (1499)

we've travelled even deeper into typeface character: ratdolt's euclid's elements, griffo's amazing bembo, from gutenberg's high gothic to italian and french roman, geoffory tory's pre-neoclassical design, the broken pot, humanism, the nuremberg chronicles, garamond the virtuoso. unlucky tyndale, maps, vesalius's human altas. wow!

what's on your mind? 

Monday, August 31, 2015

your turn #1

this is one of my favorite ornate initials. 
Lindisfarne Gospels (c.698aD). simply amazing!

hi, class. we've covered miscellaneous aspects of the history of graphic design (up to the high middle ages), right around the emergence of the Gothic script (circa early 15th century).

you should post a 150-word comment on any of those aspects treated in class: whether a specific typeface, design style, design development, image, concept, object, mark, etc. try to make your comment relevant to our discussion --so far. don't be just casual about it, think about what to say and do your best to add something meaningful to the discussion. next wednesday we'll open the class with your reading of these comments.

you can post anonymously if you wish, or with your google, facebook accounts. just don't forget to sign at the bottom of your comments (not alias, but your real name).

 i'll close the post for comments on tuesday night.that's the deadline for posting a comment.