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HISTORY OF

GRAPHIC DESIGN
A Reference to Important Events
Beginning of Writing/ 400–500 BC Collapse of Roman Empire

Alphabet/ Type 800 Carolingian Minuscules Carolingian Minuscules

3100 BCE Early Sumerian Pictographic script 1000 BC Paper arrives to Europe through
Arabs/Egyptians
2039 BCE Cuneiform writing

2012 BCE First evidence of papyrus Pictographic Script 1300 Invention of movable printed woodblocks

1650–1200 BCE Stamp cylinder 1400 Woodblock printed cards


1500 BCE Abstract Phoenician writing 1452 Gutenberg’s printing press
1000 BCE Greek alphabet
1470 Old Style typefaces
Gutenberg’s printing press
1000 BCE Parchment
Greek Alphabet 1700s Transitional typefaces
105 CE Paper invented in China 1800 Modern typefaces
300 BCE Roman alphabet 1850 Square Serifs typefaces Square Serif Typeface

300 CE Codex Augustus Roman Alphabet


Early Art/ Design Early Art/ Design
1450s Gutenberg’s printing press 1846 American Chromolitography
1841 First publicity agency, US
1600–1750 Baroque Art
1871 Photoengraving Lithography
1603–1867 Tocuwaga period of seclusion in Japan

Lithography 1880 Photoprinting (half-tone screens)


Early 1700s Rococo Art
1891–1898 Kelmscott Press
1760–1840 Industrial Revolution Chromolithography

1796 Lithography by Senefelder

1800 Neo–Classical Art (and Victorian style)

1818 Harper Brothers Printing Firm


1839 Daguerreotype
Daguerrotype
Photoprinting
Arts and Crafts Movement
Characteristics of Arts and Crafts art include symmetry, ornament, detail, real-
ism/idealism, and the glorification of past

1880-1890s
The Arts and Crafts Movement was against social, moral and artistic
confusion of the Industrial Revolution. It advocated for handicraft, and
was against mass production. It focused on the harmony between
production and human life.
1834-1896 William Morris
He was the leader of the Arts and Crafts movement. Called for:Fitness of
purpose, truth to nature of materials,individual expression. He was inspired by
the writings of John Ruskin and Augustus Pugin.
1819-1900 John Ruskin
The Arts and Crafts philosophy was influenced by Ruskin’s social criticism,
which sought to relate the moral and social health of a nation to the qualities
of its architecture and design. Ruskin thought machinery was to blame for
many social ills and that a healthy society depended on skilled and creative
workers. Like Ruskin, Arts and Crafts artists tended to oppose the division of
labor and to prefer craft production, in which the whole item was made and
assembled by an individual or small group.
Art Nouveau 1898
Other important artists include Eugène Grasset, Alphonse Mucha, Peter
Behrens

Vienna Secession
1890-1910
Generic name for different approaches to an international, decorative
style. Decorative Style, Asian influence.
A reaction to academic art of the 19th century, it was inspired by
natural forms and structures, not only in flowers and plants but also
in curved lines. Architects tried to harmonize with the natural environ-
ment.
Art Nouveau was inspired by Asian art, which was flat but expressed forms of
nature. Such artists includeUkiyo-e, Katsushika Hokusai, Ando Hiroshige.
Geometry Pattern Simplification Atmosphere, gesture, expression
Interpretation of the foreign and the old, into new forms…
1836–1933 Jules Cheret
Considered the “Father of the modern poster”
1863–1957 Van de Velde
Belgium (and Netherlands) Called for a New Art (Nieuwe Kunst), contempo-
rary in concept and form, with vitality and ethical integrity of the past
CUBISM
1890-1910
Important artists include Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, and Fer-
nand Léger.
Mainly an art movement. Influence from tribal art. Fragments of ob-
jects to create figures. Insinuating movements in their artwork.
In Cubist artwork, objects are analyzed, broken up and reassembled
in an abstracted form—instead of depicting objects from one view-
point, the artist depicts the subject from a multitude of viewpoints to
represent the subject in a greater context.[3]
Futurism
1909-1916
It was an artistic and social movement that originated in Italy in the
early 20th century. It emphasized and glorified themes associated
with contemporary concepts of the future, including speed, technol-
ogy, youth and violence, and objects such as the car, the aeroplane
and the industrial city.
Important artists include Filippo Marinetti, Stéphane Mallarmé, and
Guillaume Apollinaire
Dada
1916-1924
The movement primarily involved visual arts, literature, poetry, art
manifestoes, art theory, theatre, and graphic design, and concentrat-
ed its anti-war politics through a rejection of the prevailing standards
in art through anti-art cultural works.
It was a reaction to the horros of WWI. Dadaists were against war and
violenc. Their art was considered anti-art.
It was a form of rebellion. The intent was to provoke emotion.

Important artists include Marcel Duchamp, Tristan Tzara, and Jean


(Hans) Arp
Constructivism
1919-1920s
Originated in Russia beginning in 1919

Constructivism was an artistic and architectural philosophy which


was a rejection of the idea of autonomous art. The movement was in
favour of art as a practice for social purposes.
Visual Discourse, objects mean something- symbolic. It included geo-
metric shapes, photomontage, and bold lettering in order to catch the
viewer’s eye.

Important artists include El Lissitzky, and Vladimir Vasilevich Lebedev


De Stijl
1917-1931

Proponents of De Stijl advocated pure abstraction and universality by


a reduction to the essentials of form and colour; they simplified visual
compositions to the vertical and horizontal directions, and used only
primary colors along with black and white.
Horizontal, Vertical, primary colors and blocks.

Important artists include Théo van Doesburg and


Piet Mondrian.
Art Deco
1925-1940s
Art Decois an influential visual arts design style which first appeared
in France after WWI, flourishing internationally in the 1930s and 1940s
before its popularity waned after World War II.[1]

It is an eclectic style that combines traditional craft motifs with


Machine Age imagery and materials.

The style is often characterized by rich colors, bold geometric shapes,


and lavish ornamentation.

It was considered decorative art, and focused mostly on style.

A.M. Cassandre was an important figure during this time.


Bauhaus
1919-1933
Bauhaus was a school in Weimar, Germany, founded by Walter
Gropius, that combined crafts and the fine arts, and was famous for
the approach to design that it publicized and taught.

It was founded with the idea of creating a “total” work of art in which
all arts, including architecture, would eventually be brought together.

The Bauhaus style became one of the most influential currents in


Modernist architecture and modern design.

It had a profound influence upon subsequent developments in art,


architecture, graphic design, interior design, industrial design, and
typography.
International
Typographic Style
1950s
This was a design style, also known as the Swiss Style, that originated
in Switzerland which emphasizes readability, and cleanliness. It
promoted asymmetric layouts, use of a grid, sans-serif typefaces and
flush left, ragged right text. It advocated for the use of photographs
instead of illustration.
In the 1920-1940s, the Isotype Movement created by Otto Neurath and
Gerd Arntz wanted to create a world language without words using
pictographic symbols that were geometric in shape that everyone
could understand.

Important artists of this time include Herbert Matter, Emil Ruder, Josef
Müller-Brockmann, Armin Hofmann, and Adrian Frutiger.
New York School
1950s - 1960s
The New York School was known as “The Abstract Expressionists”,
in which a variety of different fields, including poets, dancers,
composers, and artists, began creating work that explored new
directions in art. They wanted to break away from what was socially
acceptable.
It placed emphasis on expression, and incorporated abstract ideas
and forms.

Influential designers of this time include Henry Wolf, Charles and Rae
Eames, Saul Bass, Bradbury Thompson, Alvin Lustig, and Paul Rand.
Postmodernism
1950s -
This design movement felt that Modernist design was “too uniform”,
“boring”, and “sterile”, and challenged the structure and clarity that
was so prevalent in the earlier movement. It brought back earlier
forms of design such as ornamentation and the vernacular in order
to expand the range of design possibilities. It let go of the idea
that all design had to have functionality and embraced the idea of
experimentation for personal fulfillment.

Post-modern art and design can be described as highly expressive,


allowing the artist to engage with the audience through his or her work.
Often times, it could be chaotic and irrational. Although it had separate
ideas from Modernism, it still utilized counterforms and restrictions
such as grids to enhance their designs.

Influential designers of this time include Paula Scher, Carin Goldberg,


Neville Brody, Milton Glaser, and Wolfgang Weingart.
Digital Age
1984-
With the creation of computers came the creation of digital design.
The first designs incoporated pixels, creating a jagged like effects to
the designs that were produced. Type was transformed into an object
with points. This era created many new typefaces for the computer
and also revived some old styles and alphabets. Superfamilies were
created to give typefaces more variety. Computer design also allowed
for images to overlap, which could not be done before.
The invention of the world wide web allowed for everyone to have
access to all sorts of ideas and things, such as type, and things to
read. People could talk to anyone around the world. Everyone is a
potential publisher as they could post their work on the internet for the
world to see.

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