L2_’ History of GD ‘

The second lecture was about the “history” of graphic design. The topics that I was particularly interested in were the four points below:

1.Why do we study the history of graphic design?

This was how JP’s lecture started, and various opinions were heard. A student said he was inspired by past collage works when he researched for ideas when working on his own collage project last year. Another student mentioned that learning about how our predecessors overcome obstacles can give us strength. My answer was that it allows us to smoothly communicate with others in the same design industry. Think back to when you are given feedback about your work from our tutor. Our tutors refer to names of designers and past works when providing their feedback. If students don’t know about these people or works, then the otherwise useful advice will be meaningless. In addition, when you work with other people in the industry, then having a common image of a past masterpiece that we can gear towards will make the entire process smoother.

2.what is graphic design?

I answered commercial art. If commercial is too narrow a word, then I can call it an art for a particular purpose. This purpose can be to communicate information or to educate people about the gap between male and female, the gap of wealth, or about the environmental issues and the like. What I want to emphasize here is that design is different from pure art. The famous Italian graphic designer Bruno Funari wrote in his book Artista e designer (Artist and Designer) that ” an artist’s dream is to reach the museums. The designer’s dream is to reach a supermarket in the city.” I believe this short text summarizes the difference of the two.

3.When did graphic design start?

There were many opinions for this question as well. One student raised the paintings in Lascaux Cave as its start. Another student mentioned the Industrial revolution in the United Kingdom as its start. There was also one student it’s the invention of Printing by Gutenberg. Then, JP introduced opinions from two design historians that wrote famous books about the history of graphic design. Meggs says the hieroglyph is the start while Hollis mentions French posters made in 1893 as the start. I agree with Hollis’s opinion. This is because I believe the main purpose of graphic design is commercial. It is true that the Egyptian hieroglyph or the Lascaux paintings were important as the start of communicating through visual means, but this appears to be too distant from the purpose of graphic design today. Let me put this differently. If you were to see a real hieroglyph, then you must go to a museum. If I were to borrow Bruno Munari’s words, things in a museum are not the graphic design that we are covering. This is because graphic designs are something we find in supermarkets in the city.




First Things First memo_1

This seminar introduces historical and current debates and visual practices that address the ethics and politics of graphic design and social responsibility of the designer. We will look at the utopian vision of early 20th century modernism, the debate stirred up by the First Things First Manifesto in the late 1960s and the more recent ‘culture jumping’ movement which attacked the slick and powerful images designers created for brands.


social purpose of design/ social responsibility of the designer

early 19th〜industrial society (**formely made by artisans, craftsmen, artists)

MASS PRODUCTION,advertising,promotion,consumerism


Arts and Crafts Movement(1880s,Britain,US,Japan)=well-designed= improve society, pleasure of craft,

Industrial modernism( Bauhaus, 1919-1933, Germany )=hope to form a modern type of human being and environment…….FUNCTIONALISM, GEOMETRIC FORMALISM, MACHINE AESTHETICS,

a belief in the power of design as an agent of social change 




political graphic art and design


social responsibility

design ethics


culture jamming movement

Is the Role of Design to glorify corporate power? (glory:栄光)/Stuart Ewen“mass produced images…The ubiquitous(至るところにある)power of the image is visible in products, packaging, and advertisement. It is an essential element in the construction of corporate and national identity. ..Images also influence the ways in which individuals establish a sense of personal identity….The flood of cheap, mass-produced images that swamped European and American markets from 1870 VS designers claimed they could light the path to a new democratic society….Arts and Crafts, Art Nouveau, industrial modernism….these approaches expressed social and political outlook….utopian future….TODAY=such thinking is rare….designers are PRIMARY aware of there work as a SELLING DEVICE….there are few connections made to the socio-aesthetic tradition from which their profession was born. An aestheticism that separates IMAGES from SOCIAL CONCERNS=practicing designer and most design school …..”good design”…..This lack of systematic thought…..merchandising and mass marketing…..ever hungry consumer markets….TODAY=eye well….design today speaks a visual language that continually reinforces the outlook and interests of business…..Appealing to the emotions….commercial design….toxic form of communication….beautiful,hazardous ideas….environmental resources….nature….”the good life”….





Language and Semiotics memo_1

‘The Crystal Goblet or Printing Should be Invisible’-Warde,1930….

“As a designer, in order to be a good typographer, you have to be interested in language. You have to be interested in the operations of language and how it functions.”( Simon Johnston)

“Graphic designers are responsible for the communication of ideas through words, signs, and pictures, Yet experimentation and new aesthetics cannot emerge without a thorough understanding of reading and writing: If we accept that language is important, we must be prepared to protect it.”( Lucienne Roberts)

typographic transparency….’Modernist’….promote the transmission of thoughts and ideas….content/thought/idea…..as a carrier….the form….the avant-garde inspired group 8vo….8vo VS  Warde….treating type as image….place typographic form center stage….

sign and pictures….sexual connotation….emoji of condom(duplex)….pictogram….’Crystal Goblet’….type=vehicle….have to make the reader concentrate on the content,not type….

Case study of 1997 D&AD Awards, Copywriter:Will Andry….personal feeling….as if speaking to us directly….give/convey a reader the impression that writer is speaking to reader….writer’s voice behind the words….in this work:type is normal,layout is normal….typo=後ろに下がるべき!、一歩下がる

Type and Language….language is more important than type=protect language(Lucienne Roberts)….

content=language=more important VS typo=form=image

Task 1: pair works: Interview


WHO・・・Jihoon/ WHY・・・for the uni entrance exam/ WHAT・・・IELTS/ HOW・・・study hard/ WHEN・・・last year/ Where・・・UK

Form VS Content….overtake language….

“8vo were treating typography as the image whereas before it was the bit that you put at the bottom of the poster after you had the ideas. they exploited the fact that you could make the typography entertaining itself”

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TEXT(letterforms)・・・set very tight, touch each other, overlapping, types become one image, collision

COLOR・・・interfear 色が可読性を干渉している,color upon color

“Type as image alone is meaningless unless it has an inherent interrelationship to the information it is communicating, otherwise it can only be decoration.” (Bridget Wilkins)

relationship between language and type


Raygun magazine, David Carson, 1994

Interview of musician, consists of symbols=cannot read=because musician’s talk is so boring, language=purely form,this work stands on the totally opposite side of The Crystal Goblet.



Guiilame Apollinaire=letterpress….Concrete poem….typographic image….animal etc

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The Text”CONTENTS” is becoming unreadable….vol.50=geometric face, vol.55=so abstract…doesn’t say nothing