Design history

15 December 2009

The romance of chemicals

The romance of chemicals

hamish thompson

A portrait of Swiss designer Max Schmid, father of ‘Geigy style’, by New Zealand typographer Hamish Thompson
Zurich is a long way from my home in Wellington, New Zealand, so I missed out on the Geigy exhibition, ‘Good Design, Good Business’ held in the Zurich Museum of Design earlier this year, writes Hamish Thompson.

14 December 2009

Pan Am’s Helvetica dreamtime

Pan Am’s Helvetica dreamtime

How I unearthed a forgotten chapter in corporate design history
I came across six Pan Am posters while visiting the ‘Here Is Every. Four Decades of Contemporary Art’ exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, writes Frederico Duarte.

7 December 2009

Cut and paste heroes

Cut and paste heroes

jeremy aynsley

Elaine Lustig Cohen pays homage to graphic design’s Modernist forbears
The recent New York exhibition ‘My Heroes: portraits of the avant-garde’ featured a set of works in collage and mixed media by artist and graphic designer Elaine Lustig Cohen, writes Jeremy Aynsley.

5 December 2009

The form of the book

The form of the book

jane cheng

Fifteenth-century book-making – white space by design and default
It is usually argued by incunabulists (specialists in works printed prior to 1501) that the first printed books were designed to look exactly like their manuscript predecessors, writes Jane Cheng. Looking at the two examples here, both fifteenth-century versions of the Imitatio Christi now in the Harvard Libraries, it is tempting to agree.

26 November 2009

Ms C’s sketchbook

Ms C’s sketchbook

the picture department

Margaret Calvert pays tribute to typographer Phyllis Pearsall
Mrs P’s Journey by Margaret Calvert is an A2, seven-colour screen-print, available from the Design Museum Shop in an edition of 100. All proceeds go towards the Design Museum exhibitions and education programme.

24 November 2009

Designing for Dieter Rams

Designing for Dieter Rams

bibliothèque, mason wells

Bibliothèque on the graphic roots of product design
There are important designers and then there are the really important designers, writes Mason Wells of Bibliothèque. Dieter Rams is definitely one of the latter.

18 November 2009

Bigger is better

Bigger is better

sara martin

Paula Scher relates ‘A series of strange circumstances’ for her D&AD talk
Paula Scher started her talk in London last week with examples of her work from her first job at CBS records, where she had to design more than a hundred LP covers a year, writes Sara Martin.

4 November 2009

Early adopter: Desmond Jeffery

Early adopter: Desmond Jeffery

simon esterson

St Bride hails the ‘non-designer’ who’s an unsung hero of British Modernism
The most exciting graphic design exhibition I’ve seen in London recently is at the St Bride Library, writes Simon Esterson. But its subject would never have admitted to being a designer.

29 October 2009

The seventh Python

The seventh Python

john l. walters

Storm Thorgerson’s iconic album art at Integrated2009
To designers of a certain vintage, Storm Thorgerson, one of the founders (with Aubrey Powell) of Hipgnosis, is a star, the prog Peter Saville. Yet he’s off many people’s graphic design radar, writes John L. Walters. Which might be the way he likes it, since he claims to know nothing about typography and disdains illustration.

15 October 2009

On your bike

On your bike

ben brookbanks

Andrew Ritchie wins UK’s longest-running design prize for the Brompton
The UK’s longest-running design prize has been awarded to Andrew Ritchie, the designer of the iconic Brompton folding bicycle, writes MultiAdaptor’s Ben Brookbanks. Organised by the Design Council and held at Buckingham Palace, the announcement of the 2009 winner was celebrated alongside a special ceremony to mark the fiftieth anniversary of the Prince Philip Designers Prize.
 
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