Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Let's Tell a Story

Sitting in a hotel room in Baltimore, having forgotten to charge my phone before heading out. So I’ll kill two birds as I wait for the battery icon to get all happy and green.

In my talk last night at MICA, Whitney Sherman asked a question about the relationship between midcentury design and the work I had presented.

Certainly I have spent plenty of time with material from that period over the last ten years, beginning with our acquisition of the Al Parker collection. I responded to that effect. But, I added, my affection for such work goes beyond postwar nostalgia. As a designer, I think that the economic limitations imposed by printing budgets, etc., created useful constraints. The two-color problem is a gift from God.

Without much comment, I offer a few images of an ensemble of Harry Beckhoff original illustrations published in Redbook in 1949. For present purposes, the period gender politics are not of concern; I’m focused on the carpentry of the images and the narrative they deliver.

Wit + economy + grace + discipline = something special.

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