Individual Work Essay – Alphonse Mucha and Milton Glaser

In the following essay, I shall be discussing the relations of both Alphonse Mucha and Milton Glaser in the context of both social and cultural aspects, as well as the events that surrounded the era in which they worked in.

Art Nouveau, literally meaning ‘New Art’, had many known aliases later on, for example, it was called Jugendstil in Germany, and Stile Liberty in Italy. The movement was characterised by the use of floral patterns, a deep connection with nature and organics, most of which were given a very curved style which gave off a sense of organic fluidity.

Alphonse Mucha - Job Cigarettes

Alphonse Mucha – Job Cigarettes

 

During the 19th century, industrialization was occurring all across Europe, which also brought about advancements in technology – Which is where the birth of the poster came through. During this Poster craze, people were astounded by coloured poster prints, which were being heavily invested as a method of experimentation for budding artists. Naturally, being on the verge of war, these posters were then utilized as vessels for propaganda. Which brings us to Alphonse Mucha.

Alphonse Mucha

Alphonse Mucha

Alphonse Mucha was a leading icon within the Art Nouveau movement. He was an artist based within Paris, who was mostly involved with the poster craze, thus making him an illustrator and designer. Mucha was surrounded by the industrial changes occurring during this period, he was a catalyst to some extent, seeing as his utilization of the poster sparked the previously mentioned poster hype. His fame sparked a massive boom once he created a life sized poster for Sarah Bernhardt in 1894, in which he gained a 6 year contract. One could say that Mucha was the face of the Art Nouveau movement seeing as his works proved to be some of the most notable and best examples of the nouveau era. His posters frequently depicted the female figure, elegantly surrounded  by organic forms such as stylized vines, flowers and other forms, which later became a key characteristic of the movement itself. The Gizmonda was a work in particular that contributed to Mucha’s fame.

Alphonse Mucha's 'Gismonda' - 1894

Alphonse Mucha’s ‘Gismonda’ – 1894

Moving on, during the late 1950’s, spanning to the 60’s existed a rise in corporate identity. Industrial, transportation and communication methods had evolved and so rose corporations within several industries. The 60’s brought about a multitude of political agendas, for example, the murder of John F.Kennedy in 1963, and the African American rights activist, Martin Luther King Jr’s ‘’I have a Dream’’ speech that occurred within the same year. As for wars of this time, the 60’s brought about the Cold War, which was deemed more of a political agenda, and the gruelling war in Vietnam, which triggered multiple anti-nuclear protest campaigns that stretched far across the United States of America.

Propaganda Poster used during the Cold War.

Propaganda Poster used during the Cold War.

The 60’s also brought about Milton Glaser. Born in 1929, Glaser is highly regarded as the original creator of the ‘I ❤ NY’ logo, which is renowed in every part of the globe, it is truly an ongoing trend which has yet to slow down.

Milton Glaser's I <3 NY Logo design.

Milton Glaser’s I ❤ NY Logo design.

His career path led him to the Push Pin Studios, were his works had contributed to establishing a part of the studio’s style. In a similar manner to Alphonse Mucha, he was commissioned to design a Bob Dylan poster, in which it would later become one of the most recognized posters ever, much how Mucha became a recognized icon of his era through the Gismonda poster.

Milton Glaser's Bob Dylan Poster.

Milton Glaser’s Bob Dylan Poster.

You could say that history has, in a way, effectively repeated itself in such a way where both these designers took the happenings of their surroundings, and channelled them into pure inspiration, which in turn, led them to creating iconic designs, which, not only created an identity for their time, but paved the way for other designers to take their lead. Both Mucha and Glaser found themselves in a rapidly evolving environment, where society birthed technological improvements and inventions. Mucha was implementing an industrial change. Glaser was experiencing them.

References

The History Of Posters,2011. Design History. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.designhistory.org/index.html [Accessed 27 January 2014]

The Illustrated Poster. 2014. The Illustrated Poster. [ONLINE] Available at:http://www.designhistory.org/Poster_pages/IllPosters.html. [Accessed 28 January 2014].

Cold War — History.com Articles, Video, Pictures and Facts. 2014. Cold War — History.com Articles, Video, Pictures and Facts. [ONLINE] Available at:http://www.history.com/topics/cold-war. [Accessed 28 January 2014].

 

Advertisements
Standard

Stefan Sagmeister

Stefan Sagmeister

Stefan Sagmeister

Stefan Sagmeister

Stefan Sagmeister was  based in New York, but was born and raised in his home country, in Austria. He is renown for his meticulous and yet, subversive designs, in which most were designed intentionally for the ever growing music industry.
Notable clients of his included The Rolling Stones, the British Rock Band.

Sagmeister had a certain quality that makes him stand out apart from other designers – He believed that the introduction of technology was hindering people’s will and adventurous tastes, taking short cuts if you will. What he truly desired was the bring back the idea that the designer is in fact, an artist.

His experimentations of typography revolve around the use of natural objects and other objects alike, such as organic matter i.e sticks, leaves, fruits, and inorganic items such as rocks. His artwork is considered the be very prolific, also, he has designed for multiple corporate giants on many an occasion.

His Works

The Rolling Stones - The Road to Babylon Designed by Stefan Sagmesiter.

The Rolling Stones – The Road to Babylon
Designed by Stefan Sagmesiter.

 

Sagmeister emphasised heavily upon interactive artwork, it was an immortalisation of bringing back craftsman ship into design. Movements that influence or at least, are reminiscent within his work would be Grunge, and Punk.

aNI5MLGyb4ftafwiVyrsI5Us_500

Standard

Infographic Evaluation

Now that the infographic itself is finished, I can give a proper evaluation of it.

The Design

The design had to be simple to understand, clean, and create a sense of cascading or flow as to successfully deliver the information in order, and I feel like that was achieved. The initial design was going to consist of a single line with multiple curves going down, and the date compiled on each movement would be placed within the depressions of said line. I decided to opt for another design (which would be the finalized version), which consisted of narrow profiles depicting the data in a more suitable and easier to follow format.

The legend key is a common cliche used in most infographics, but I thought that it would certainly aid in giving the infographic a well needed explanation, minus the excessive amount of wording.

The Data

The movements were easily link thanks to the pre-emptive analysis I had done before actually diving into the the project. The linking was characterised through simple coloured lines, so you could say I managed to incorporate the previous design choices within the new one.

Changes

If I were to redo the entirety of the infographic, I would have perhaps mixed the examples up a bit more by using movements such as Punk, and say Psychedelia – as to not leave Art Nouveau just as a starting point, but rather recalling its characteristics back into postmodern design and artworks used in media. Overall, I effectively channelled my point across without excessive text – which, in its entirety, is the infographic in its truest essence.

 

Standard

Presentation Draft – Part 3

Influences

Futurism major influence on other art movement were embraced by the Dadaists, Constructivists, De Stijl and Art Deco. Violent, revolutionary characteristics where applied upon the Dadists, Constructivism, Art Deco, and De Stijl works. Features applied are; Bold typefaces, typographic repetition, movement through text.

Neville Brody

Futurism was influential upon Brody’s graphical work, more for it’s typographic experimentation’s than for its philosophies and attitudes. Boccioni and Marinetti in particular inspired him. Other inspirational movements were: Dada,  Pop Art and Punk. Seeked to mark a distinction and not to replicate the past movements.He evaluated and found dynamism, humanism and non-acceptance of traditional rules and values. Style – devises different styles of typography yet tears up all the rules in the same way.Highlight interesting parts through contrasting sizes, shapes and colour.

Appropriation

Appropriation in art may be defined as a broad replica of certain aspects of an art object into a new work, relocating it into a new matrix.

“We must by necessity retrieve from the past to re-invent the future” – Malcom Garret

Peter Saville retrieved an illustration that Fortunato Depero had created and used the same characteristics for  an album cover in 1981.

Today’s Illustrations

2012 Yahoo Olympic Campaign 

Images illustrated display futuristic influences, capturing and depicting movement and speed.

Agency: Yahoo! Internal Creative Department
Creative Director: Jared Kozel
Executive Producer: Jamie Ybarra

Hoxton Window Project

The Hoxton Window Project is hosted and curated by UNIT9. The premise is simply windows overlooking Hoxton Square covered with interesting art. A jazz band, bass player and a drummer were illustrated in their designs.

References

A History of Graphic Design: Chapter 69; Copyright, Appropriation, Plagiarism and Code of Ethics . [ONLINE] Available at: http://guity-novin.blogspot.com/2013/08/appropriation-and-plagiarism-and-code.html. [Accessed 21 January 2014].

Futurism, Constructivism, Dada and De Stijl | jamshadarshad. [ONLINE] Available at: http://jamshadarshad.wordpress.com/2011/10/10/futurism-constructivism-dada-and-de-stijl/. [Accessed 21 January 2014].

Inkling for Web. [ONLINE] Available at: https://www.inkling.com/read/history-of-graphic-design-philip-meggs-5th/chapter-13/futurism. [Accessed 21 January 2014].

Italian Futurist & Expressive Typography. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.designhistory.org/Avant_Garde_pages/Futurism.html. [Accessed 21 January 2014].

Italian Futurism – Smarthistory. [ONLINE] Available at: http://smarthistory.khanacademy.org/futurism.html. [Accessed 21 January 2014].

No More Rules: Graphic Design and Postmodernism – Rick Poynor – Google Books. [ONLINE] Available at: http://books.google.com.mt/books?id=lliBuozeoOgC&pg=PA78&lpg=PA78&dq=futurism+paula+scher&source=bl&ots=iiR_dMr9xi&sig=Whe-dd_vZ-H4MWGjJ_yiemloeEE&hl=en&sa=X&ei=0GjaUtvFA-eK4ATK_4CoAQ&ved=0CFUQ6AEwCQ#v=onepage&q&f=false. [Accessed 21 January 2014].

. 2014. . [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.scottishschools.info/Websites/SchSecWhitehill/UserFiles/file/Higher%20Art%20Homework/Graphic%20designer%20Neville%20Brody%20facts.pdf. [Accessed 21 January 2014].

Stealing From Paula Scher | Teaching Design | Christopher Simmons. [ONLINE] Available at: http://minesf.com/resources/cca/2010/09/07/steal-this-idea/. [Accessed 21 January 2014].

The Illustrated Poster. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.designhistory.org/Poster_pages/IllPosters.html. [Accessed 21 January 2014].

Standard

Presentation Draft – Part 2

Futurism in Architecture

Early-20th century form of architecture born in Italy, characterized by anti-historicism, strong chromaticism, long dynamic lines, suggesting speed, motion, urgency and lyricism. The Art Deco style of architecture with its streamlined forms was regarded as futuristic. The original name for both early and late Art Deco was Art Moderne.

Guillaume Apollinaire

”The Calligrammes are an idealisation of free verse poetry and typographical precision in an era when typography is reaching a brilliant end to its career, at the dawn of the new means of reproduction that are the cinema and the phonograph.”

– Guillaume Apollinaire, in a letter to André Billy

  • He contributed to graphic design through the publication of Calligrammes, a book dedicated to his pattern poetry.
  • Object shaped, letterforms are arranged forming a visual design.
  • Birthed a fusion of fine arts and poetry, both of which were enhanced through the use of patterned typography.
  • He experimented with a poetry in which a simple reading along the familiar linear axes was no longer possible. The page became a sort of canvas for experimentation with different spatial relationships and with the possibility of multiple readings along different axes.

Paula Scher

Paula Scher is a graphic designer who was taught in the methods of the Swiss International Style, i.e, Helvetica on a Grid. She makes use of historical design to make visual analogies, also altering the emotional impact as to appeal to contemporary audiences.

 

Standard

Presentation Draft – Part 1

Futurism

Italian futurism was one of the most aggressive art movements of the 20th century. Why? The futurists had a crucial tool to aid their cause: Mass Media.

1909

This year marks the beginning of the futurist movement. Italian poet, Filippo Tommaso Marinetti posts his manifesto in newspaper, Le Figaro which will inspire artists and creatives to realize  his ideas and ambitions for the country.

What was in the Manifesto?

  • Rejuvenation of Italy by embracing all things modern
  • Futurist Manifesto declared the end of the past as to make way for the future
  • Celebrate technology, speed and machinery

Marinetti did not see Italy as a very modern place to be in 1909, full of museums, classical art and cafes. He declared: ”destroy all museums”

We want no part of it, the past”
“We the young and the strong futurists”

Characteristics

  • -Typographic revolution against the classical tradition
  • -Explosive, emotionally charged compositions
  • -Redoubling of words represented power and speed
  • -Sense of movement created through diagonal strokes
  • -Repetition of features to simulate dynamism
  • -Embrace of transformation and science

Cubism or Futurism?

Futurist paintings seem lost amongst the many popular and recognizable Cubist paintings. The confusion is understandable. Like Cubism, Futurism also did not focus on capturing the object itself but rather, the way the mind sees it – assessing its value from all angles. The main element of futurist painting was to capture the experience of a scene rather than only it’s visuals.

Photography and film also enlightened the futurist movement allowing them to see things the naked eye couldn’t. The mystery of how a horse runs was solved thanks to the invention of film.

Futurism – Politics and War

  • One of the most politicized art movements of the twentieth century.
  • Merged artistic and political agendas, driving change in Italy and across Europe.
  • Futurists believed that anxiety and demolition would end the existing state of affairs to emerge a stronger, energized Italy.
  • Displayed support to the coming war

Futurism was not isolated to visual forms. We can find Marinetti’s futurist influence in literature,architecture, music, propaganda and even cooking!

 

Standard