NO MORE RULES
Chapter 1 Origins
[PM = postmodernism]
In the 1st chapter of no rules Poynor says that:
Postmodernism in design came out as a reaction to the structured Modernism that dominated design from around the 30s up to the 70s, when there were the first.
Attempts of new design which spread in the mid of 80s (Poynor, 2003).
Page 18: at the first paragraph sets out how the term postmodernism came to be connected with graphic design. Some people regarded postmodernism as just a style and that is disappeared around 1990. Rick Poynor argues that PM is much more than just a style. He writes. ‘…there is no reason for believing that it [PM] came to a sudden halt around 1990 and proponents of postmodernism as a graphic style do not argue that it did.’ [Poynor 2003:18]
I will agree that is much more than a style, it has changed the design world and rules are ignored. By saying no ignored i don’t mean that all that the modernist have imposed can’t still be applied it can. But with a new approach and creativity is almost like an eye opener.
In the majority of cases, as Keedy (2006, p.17) said,
It is only a matter of laziness. “Simple methodologies generate simple results…
The idea that it is “really difficult to do something simple very well” is a load
Of Modernist propaganda (crap), but will always be very popular with lazy and
Many designers argue about this idea of Postmodernism and Modernism I think that I can embrace both sides of the “coin” they a both creative but with different views.
Pages 18-19: Poynor goes through a series of explanations of the origins of PM in various other disciplines and ways of describing it. Some of the phrases and words used to describe PM are: freewheeling, eclecticism, an attitude, without moralising, breakdown, aesthetically adventurous, pleasure giving, partly modern, ‘hybrid, double-coded, based on fundamental dualities.’ strange and paradoxical, playful elements and decorative. [Ibid:18-19]
Pages 19-20: He suggests that Wolfgang Weingart was, ‘…a seminal figure…that in time [became] postmodernistic.’ [Ibid] He then gives a short biography of Weingart and why he changed his mind. Weingart says. I was motivated to provoke this stodgy profession and to stretch the typeshop’s capabilities to the breaking point…’ [Ibid:20] he wanted to push typography, ‘…until the text came close to being unintelligible.’ [Ibid] Poynor concludes by writing that, ‘Weingart’s work was spontaneous, intuitive, deeply infused with feeling…’ [Ibid].
It is clear that Weingart changed his mind tired of working for so long under modernism and rules Postmodernism came like fresh air and innovation in his career.
I agree that sometimes we have to go beyond what is seen as safe and take risks and cross boundaries in order to achieve
Here are some quotes by Wolfgang Weingart
“My contention then was that Swiss Typography needed a fresh impulse. Based as it was on a reductionist philosophy, for instance, was considered suspect…” [keithtam]
“Forty-five years ago I was very uncivilized. I did not know about the Bauhaus or Tschichold. I lived in my own world, working seven days a week.” [keithtam]
“Achieving genuine aesthetic quality with the computer presumes a rigorous sense of discipline on the part of the designer. I try to get the students to question typographic details with the overall aim of provoking discernment, to see differences, to become critical of the machine.” [keithtam]
These quotes were some of many views that he had in regards to Modernism. He is thankful for the knowledge that he has taken from Modernism and that can be applied in [PM]
Has he describes a fresh impulse. In this web site [sparkledesi] have found something that I share the same opinion with they said that Wolfgang Weingart is the link between classic Swiss typography and contemporary postmodern design. His interest is not in rejecting the basic principles of the Swiss method, but in using them as a point of departure for an exploration into new arenas of experimentation and self-expression. Weingart’s influence is through his teaching, and his goal is to guide students in first mastering fundamental principles, and then using them as a flexible vocabulary for limitless ideas and variations. Weingart’s unique brand of “fun” typography has had a profound influence on the typographic design of today.
I think that you can combine both styles and the outcome will be greater than one on its own. That was his idea of Great design for me that is what I will apply mix both styles I cannot say that one is better than another they both have strong values and I guess I connected to both.
Page 21: In the next section of the chapter Poynor describes the influence Weingart had on a group of young American designers, among them, Dan Friedman and April Greiman. It contrasts the change in style that the designers of the time 1968 -71 went through form the: ‘simple, restrained, orderly, static, exclusive, abstract, pure, reduced, harmonious, systematic, and integrated.’ To the: ‘complex, excessive, chaotic, dynamic, inclusive, vernacular, contextual, expanded, dissonant, random, and fractured.’ [Poynor 2003:21]
There is an evocative description of one of Friedman’s design where Poynor writes about the different elements of the design ‘…float and revolve around each other like so much debris adrift in deep space.’ [Ibid]
I think that you can combine both styles and the outcome will be greater than one on its own.
Pages 22-23: He continues to map out the influence of Weingart and analyses a 1977 exhibition called, ‘Postmodern Typography: Recent American Developments.’ This show brought together many of the leading proponents of this ‘new wave’ of so-called postmodern graphic designers. [Ibid]
The same site I have visited previously [sparkledesi] it has an opinion to say that Weingart was ahead of his time, since the visual effects he achieved through traditional media would soon become the language of new wave design and computer graphics. His work anticipated the computer and his students and those who came after him used the computer to continue his ideas.
Weingart influenced the development of this visual language of layering and play with type through his students who went on to be the first designers to exploit the possibilities of computers in other parts of the world, such as April Greiman and Dan Friedman. He was also a strong influence through his lecture tours and publications. However, Weingart was upset by the exportation of his visual style, going so far as to call those who imitated him “criminalistic copy monkeys.” He resented not so much former students, but people who simply copied the tricks without understanding the idea and process. He said, “It was never my intention to create a commercial ‘style.'”
In the 1970s he redirected his teaching efforts to include more fundamentals and basic Swiss principles, while encouraging students to find their own directions and forms.
I like what they have described find their own directions and form I believe that we all have to find our own way and apply according to the knowledge that was given.
Page 24: Here Poynor describes the work of Greiman and says of her work that, ‘[She] contrasts the mystery; irrationality and unexplained aspect of her work with the masculine linearity of Swiss design…’ He does point out through that, ‘…her aim, though, was to build additional layers on this sense of order and structure rather than abandon it.’ [Ibid:24]
He continues with an analysis of a poster by Willi Kunz and describes that Swiss design, ‘…is simultaneously acknowledged and subverted.’ [Ibid]
Pages 25-26: In this section Poynor looks at the way graphic designer had become a slave to the ‘Corporate Style’ and had become, ‘…totally predictable and lifeless…’ [ibid:25] He quotes from Valerie F. Brooks article ‘Triumph of the Corporarte Style…’: ‘It was a period in which security and safety replaced risk as the dominant selling tool.’ [Ibid] He also points out that this ‘New Wave’ of designers was met by negative criticism, and still today by some, from older designers who were used to ‘…suppressing the personal,…’ and resisted the ideas put forward by Weingart and Greiman, ‘…that design might be a form of art.’ [Ibid:26]
Poynor goes on to argue that these postmodern ideas had been around for a while in Architecture but had not been noticed by the graphic designer. He looks closely at Robert Venturi’s ideas about architecture. Venturi writes that, ‘I am for messy vitality over obvious unity.’ [Ibid]
Others argue that the effects of Post-structuralism in Graphic design were enormous and different.
On one side, the emphasis on the openness of meaning “has been incorporated
… Into a romantic theory of self-expression” (Lupton, Miller, p.9).
Pages 26-27: Here Poynor writes about how these PM architects would look at places like Las Vegas and brash roads signs for inspiration as much as the serious designs of modernism. He points out that a generation later, compared to the way architecture had been developing, the graphics of the late 1980s and early 1990s ‘…now looks far from shocking.’ [Ibid: 27]
I do agree and think that Postmodernism has affected and shocked modernists at the time, the new approach has changed design forever by making each design free of rules.
No more rules
Page 38: Poynor writes about graphic design that has not normally be written about done by non professional and that the boundaries between `low and high ´ art were being broken down in the 1960s.The philosopher Paul Feyerabend says, ´Deviations and errors …are essential precondition of progress.´ [Poynor 2003:38]
He writes that Punk Rock Graphic design was epitomised by the work of Jamie Reid who famously made the record covers for Sex Pistols and was a friend of Malcolm McLaren.
Both went to Croydon Art School and refused to´…. Acknowledge any such category as “error” [Ibid:38-39] He was a political graphic designer who took the ideas of French Situationists to create anarchic graphics and situations. He would make fluorescent stickers `Save Petrol ,burn cars ´ and `Special Offer .This store welcomes shoplifters.´[Ibid]
Poynor quotes Reid who argues that. `We wanted to make the (audience) think for themselves, always with the element questing the status quo and what is considered normal.´[Ibid:40]
Page 41:Things were also happening in the USA along similar lines with designers like Frank Edie and Cliff Roman who both worked with a `spiky tension´ that created `violent text fragments´ that had a combustible punk spirit.´[Ibid:41]
Page 42: Poynor then goes on to look at the influence this type of `Punk ´design had on other designers. One such designer was Terry Jones who started the magazine I-D and described his ways of working as `instant design. This edgy sort work was also evident in magazines such as Hard Werken in the Netherlands [Rotterdam] which was produced from 1979 to 1982.[Ibid:42]
Page 43:Poyonor explains that Hard Werken, like Terry Jones occupied a space much closer to mainstream perception than the first waves of punk. They consciously rejected the functionalist tradition, exemplified by Wim Crouwel and Total Design.[Ibid:43].
Poynor quotes some of Werken reaction to his style `We don’t have a collective style.´
`Some of us work intuitively, others more deliberately and controlled, we all are more deliberately and controlled, but we are all different. A lot can be used, though. In that since we are fairly aggressive. It looks as if we combine every conceivable colour or typeface. On the magazine we don’t bother very much about sticking to the rules, or about what is proper. Nor are we concerned with functionality or legibility, but rather with total picture, even if that picture is illegible at times…´ [Ibid:43].
I do believe that deconstruction didn’t have to look at rules it was a free approach to express feelings.
Page 44:Poynor then continues to tell us about the Hard Werken most challenging designs. A poster by Van den Haspel for `The Year Of Japanese Film´(1981).He then explains how Werken´inventions , though subjective and ironic humour, did not represent any stated ideology or theoretical position and the groups rule-defying experimental designs coexisted from the outset with more conventional approaches to design, which predominated as Hard Werken`s mutated into a commercial design group before finally, in the mid-1990s, changing its name.[Ibid:44]
Then Poynor he breaks down the idea of Punk design he explains that Punk treated the visual form with the same freedom as punk music … but the audience for these gestures was a society in the broadest sense, rather than designers, though young designers were often members of the audience. He then explains how the term Deconstruction was received at the time how it was never a full-blown movement or coherent, Clearly defined `ism´- like Constructivism or Surrealism I the sense of having adherents who described themselves has deconstructionists’….´ [2003:44]
Page 46: Poynor tell us about Graphic designers reaction towards it and how the small number of designers and critics who did understand deconstruction, or believed in its possibilities for graphic communication, were quick to point inadequacy of this view.[2003:46]
Then he compares Deconstruction as controversial as Postmodernism and how the relationship of the two is also open to question. [Ibid:46]
In my opinion I think that revolutionary design always brings controversial opinions.
Poynor says that the term Deconstruction was introduced by French Philosopher Jaques Derrida in his book on Grammatology, published in 1967 and how in the following decade Derrida´s ideas had an enormous impact in the Universities on the teaching of humanities and how on Grammatology discussion f writing as distinctive form of representation makes it probably Derrida`s single most significant text for graphic designers since typography and design as a material processes, fall within its concerns.[Ibid:46]
Page 47: Poynor quotes some of Derrida concepts.` There is nothing outside the text´.[2003:47]
So deconstruction could mean more that just undoing thinks deconstruct .[courses.nus]
Page 51: Poynor explains about Katherine Mc Coy Derridean oppositions and how McCoy describes the uses of theory at the academy :`The emerging ideas emphasized the construction of meaning between the audience and the graphic design piece , a visual transaction that parallels verbal communication. Building on the linguistic theories of semiotics but rejecting the faith in the scientifically predictable transmission of meaning, these ideas began to have an impact on the students´ graphic design work. New experiments explored the relationships of text and image and processes of reading and seeing, with text and images meant to be read in detail, their meanings decoded. Students began to deconstruct the dynamics of visual language and understand it as a filter that inescapably manipulates the audience’s response.`[Ibid:51]
Put image Cranbook design academy of art students
Page 53: Poynor continues to explain how the experiments were already under way by 1978, when students under McCoy’s and Daniel Libeskind (the head of architecture at Cranbook) direction, designed `French Currents of the Letter ´, an issue of the Journal Visible Language devoted to poststructuralist literary theory. [Ibid:53]
Poststructuralist theories come in many embodiments, but share a preoccupation with language. Reality is not mediated by what we read or write, but is entirely constituted by those actions. [textet]
Poynor speaks about Jeffery Keedy a well-known and influential graphic designer, type designer, writer and educator.[ wiki]. He told us that he was a Master of Fine Arts student at the academy from 1983 to 1985´and that he occupied a significant position in these developments and how Keedy under the influence of Hal Foster´s The Anti-Aesthetic (1983) and the writings of Roland Barthes, began to explore design as a cultural practice rather than as a focused, professional-solving tool.[Ibid:53]
Page 54: Poynor explains Keedy views, how Keedy rejected modernism utopian vision as a bankrupt and resisted what he saw as an obsession with regularity and clarity in design, and how he like McCoy, insisted on the human value of ambiguity for audiences who were fully capable of negotiating these complexities.[Ibid :54,55]
Page 56: Poynor says about the marked influence Fella had on a generation of designers both in the United States and elsewhere; and how it all began in Cranbook before he become a student and how it continued after he graduated and joined the design faculty at California Institute of Arts (Cal Arts)in 1987.[2003:56]
To look at the influence that Poynor mentioned about Fella , Lorraine Wild, a 2006 AIGA medallist quotes: “Ed’s work marks a sea change in graphic design,” says Lorraine Wild, a 2006 AIGA medallist. “He introduced ambivalence and ambiguity, the multiple meanings of design as text and subtext, and that graphic designers are really artists.”[ AIGA]
Poynor goes on talking about Keedy Typeface Keedy Sans launched in 1990 Émigre Graphics that flaunts Fella-esque inconsistencies in its spacing, while the terminals of characters are rounded in some cases and sliced at an angle in others, making it soft and sharp.[Ibid:56]
I think that Fella has definitely influenced a generation of designers .
Page 57: Poynor says that Barry Deck’s Template Gothic acknowledged debt to Fella, and how it became on of the defying typefaces of the new decade. [2003:57]
Page 60: In the 1990 Poynor says that Ricky Valencenti and his company Thirst , were among the most prominent early American disseminators of the deconstructionist `style´ as it was rapidly coming to be perceived. His aim with Thirst was to offer `art with a function ´that filly acknowledged the design process and pushed his own self to the forward.[Ibid:60]
Ricky valenti and Michael papas Thirst image THIRST stereotypes
Page 61: Poynor speaks about Ray Gun`s design as a hip signifier of `Generation X´ youth culture encouraged to deconstructed style’s rapid take-up up by corporate advertising and Carson himself created ads for Pepsi-Cola , Nike and, later Microsoft. Poynor continues to say that he was hailed a `Hero of Deconstruction´ by a British Newspaper in 1997. Poynor then explain how in Carson’s body of work, the rule breaking impulse seen in punk become the central idea. [2003:61]
Page 62: Poynor tell us some about Carson views and how he describes his way of working has a `loose, intuitive no formal training kind of approach. And how Carson explains: `I’m not anti –School, but when I became interested in design I really didn’t know the rules…. He argues that the rationalism of grid systems and other kind of typographic formatting is `horribly irrational´ as a response to the complexity of the contemporary world.[Ibid:62]
Page 63: Poynor tell us about how Ray Gun’s an art director employed graphic devices that bore the resemblance to earlier deconstructionist work, and the magazine signalled Grunge a new Graphic design style emerged in early 90´s .Poynor explains the attitude of this new style has energetic, disrespectful, angry and subcultural in origin and how it could not last. Poynor mentions about this article “Clean Grid of Modernity” has been formally rejected by the nihilism of Industrial Youth Culture, wrote by Joshua Berger, art director of Plazm , published in Portland, Oregon and second only to Ray Gun as a product of the grunge sensibility. Ibid:63]
Poynor mentions that the only difference between the 70´s Punk and the 90´s grunge was one technology as Punk graphics were made cheaply by hand ,with biros, photocopies, found type, scissors and paste and how grunge was a product of powerful digital tools that potentially allowed anyone with the talent and inclination to knock up a typeface in a day. [Ibid:63,65]
I personally find grunge design dirty and realistic no caring much about the beautiful aspect with dirty stains, torn images, “broken” icons and creased pieces of paper it has the ability to convey a personality and an individual note.[ smash]
Page 65: Poynor says that the mid 90´s deconstruction was understood then he questions if it was understood at all. He mention about Katherine McCoys notes about the term `the regrettable think is that people haven’t read about it very deeply conclude that is just about form and. More than that, is about dissembling a visual language….´[Ibid:65,66]
No more rules
Page 70: Poynor writes about The Krafterwerk cover as an early sign of postmodern phenomenon and that rapidly became a trend. In graphic design he describes the cover he says that the designers and the musicians chose to construct an image that was backward-looking, if not quite nostalgic, and whether they intended it or not, the cover could also be read as tongue-in-cheek and humorously camp in its straight-faced seriousness.[Ibid:70,71]
Page 71: Poynor mentions literacy critic Fred Jameson, writing in 1983 about all styles and the worlds that can be invented by writers and artists have already been invented; he argued that after the 70´s and the 80´s years of classical modernism could only be exhaustion and how Jameson draws critical distinction between pastiche and the related phenomenon of parody.[Ibid:71]
Page 72: Poynor continues to say about Jameson’s distinction between the parody and pastiche hovers over any attempt to examine the ways which postmodern graphic design has made us of the histories of design and art.
Poynor says that this imitation as Jameson’s mentions has been seen viewed in that way by graphic designers. He mentions that graphic design has always borrowed images and approaches from other fields, especially from fine art and popular culture; visual references of all kinds are an essential feature of the way that it communicates.[Ibid:72]
Poynor mentions the influence of Barney Bubles in the late 70´s and how he was a crucial figure for postmodern graphic design and how was already an influence on an emerging and younger generation of designers because of his work for the hippie Rock group Hawkwind, when in the 1976 at the height of punk he became full-time designer for Stiffs Records. He then mentions how Bubbles´ exceptional facility as a `new wave´ image maker of the post-punk period was soon evident in his cover for the album Music for Pleasure by the Damned(1977).[Ibid:72]
Page 73: Poynor mentions the different albums covers that Bubbles has produced Do It Yourself by Ian Dury and the Blockheads (1979) his ambitious Armed Forces(1979), for Elvis Costello and the Attractions,wich is a mixture of art historical allusions to Mondrian, Abstract Expressionism, Op Art and Pop, fronted by painting of herd elephants in a Kistch popular style.[200:73]
He says how quickly Bubbles influence was acknowledged on Neville Brody and Malcolm Garret work. He goes on to mention Peter Saville inspiration cames even more than it did for Bubbles, not only post-war art, but as with Die Mensch-Maschine – from early twentieth-century modernism in art and design. He goes on and tells Herbet Spencer’s book Pioneers of Modern Typography, first published in 1969 and how it was a big influence on this generation of designers and giving a short introduction of El Lissitzky, Theo Van Doesburg, Kurt Schwitters, H.N.Werkman, Piet Zwart, Alexander Rodchenko… [Ibid :73,74].
Page 74: Poynor says that when Neville Brody was a Designer for the face he fashioned the opening spread of a feature about Kraftwerk in a style that referenced both Die Mensch-Machine and its graphic’s origins in Lisssitzky`s work.[2003:74]
Page 75:Poynor states that it was a period in which ambitious young designers constantly invoked the achievements of modernism’s leading lights half century earlier we goes and say how Brody was careful of on not to imitate and to draw distinction between merely copying the work of the Dadaists or the Constructivists, which he disapproved he tells how he tried to explain himself by saying that what he took was a sense of dynamism, a sense of humanism and a non-acceptance of traditional rules and values. [Ibid: 75,76]
Page 76: Poynor describe how Garret seems to have the same opinion has Jameson’s that stylistic innovation is no longer possible by declaring that `All art is theft ´ and he call it Retrievalism to describe this method that `…Invention is a myth. We create only from using what already exists…. Retrievalism acknowledges the past ….we must by necessity retrieve from the past to re-invent the future. This is a new futurist age.´ [Ibid: 76]
I have to agree with Garret we always look back to the old to reinvent the new, we see this every day from cinema to all types of art the past has a significant weight in today’s modern world of arts and especially in graphic design.
Page 77: Poynor says how angry Jon Savage a cultural critic in regards of the abuse of the historical form and how Savage show examples and took that this visual to rob the ideas was a symptom –one of many- of a `Tactcherite´ meaning a British thing.
The Poynor says that the most provocative examples from Savage were drawn from Peter Saville`s work for Manchester rock band New Order, which grew out of an earlier group by Joy Divisionad; he moves on to say how Neville Broody choose to highlight one of the cases of stealing ideas from the sleeve of Movement(1981) he has made it clear by placing it next to his historical source and he then alongside a warning headline, The age of Plunder´. Poynor says how it came as a surprise for those who thought that the powerful design was not Saville´s idea but a Futurist poster created in 1932 by Fortunato Depero and how the original sleeve never credit Depero but later own was added to the Cd release.[Ibid:77]
I believe that the stealing of ideas still on going in today ,but sometimes it gets unnoticed depending on what level the graphic designer is producing his work if it is a well-known designer in a bigger and successful graphic design company there is more of a chance to get exposed.
Page 78: Poynor continues to says about Savilles being exposed to plunder in another sleeve New Order’s Procession and how it was even closer to his source and also by the same designer Depero a publication of 1933 and how the only apparent difference was the removal of the title `Dinamo Futurista´.[Ibid:77,78]
Poynor argues the fact that if Savilles designs weren’t plagiarism, then they had to be understood as graphic examples of the kind of postmodernism `appropriation ´seen in the art world in the early 1980s, where absorbed and `recontextualized´ by contemporary artists as new artworks and he says about most controversial examples, an American artist Sherrie Levine presented photographs by Edward Weston and Walter Evans as her own, insisting that by claiming them in this way they became new pieces; he says that saville`s later explained: To me, it was better to quote Futurism verbatim, for example, by parody it ineptly- it was a more honest, more intellectual and in a way more artistic approach. It was so literal and so obvious that it never crossed my mind that people would think that I had invented this work.´[Ibid:78]
Page 79: Poynor start to say about the 80s and that especially in US `retro´ has become one of the defining styles of the decade, he then says that Paula Scher´s understanding of the of historical form and her eclectic ability to reinvent it in the services of her clients made an influential figure and how she started a new firm called Koppel & Scher, with partner Terry Koppel. Poynor says that one of their first project was a self promotional brochure that was almost a manifesto, titled Great Beginnings, and how it has presented the opening lines of literary classics such as Goethe’s Faust, Kafka’s metamorphosis and Thomas Mann’s Magic Mountain in period styles appropriate to the text.[Ibid:79]
Put an image Scher & Koppel
I really like the cover from Scher and Koppel and I think is a great way to use the historical know lodges of design, is an example of good postmodernism quality work, which is clear and organized, with a bit of modernism influences too. Reading this part of the book has made me aware of the stealing of ideas between designers and how some just take credit for something that is not theirs without giving credit to it.
Poynor describes how in 1990 at the conference on the theme of `Modernism & Eclecticism´ in New York , Tibor Kalman gave a keynote lecture addressing the use of history in graphic design, good and bad, and a revised version of text, co-written by J. Abbott Miller and Karrie Jacobs, was published in Print magazine. `Designers abuse history`…`When they use it as short cut, a way of giving instant legitimacy to their work and making it commercially successful …historical reference and down and outright copying have been and cheap and dependable substitutes for lack of ideas.´[Ibid:79,80]
Page 80: Poynor says that as one of their examples Kalman, Miller and Jacobs showed a poster by Paula Scher advertising Swatch watches (1986) based on a Swiss travel poster designed in 1934 by Herber Mattert and that it has it has no obvious character intentions or not even someone else’s idea reinvented Poynor mentions that isn’t a wholly new image in general style of Matter; he then goes to compare the closeness between Savilles appropriations but without attempt to create a third idea in the imaginative space between image and subject matter.[Ibid:80]
Poynor continues to analyse how Scher takes the main elements of Matter original image, which had a broadly economic purpose-to encourage tourism- and re-creates them, without Saville`s fetishistic fidelity detail, for the simple purpose of selling Swiss timepieces, Poynor goes on to analyse the angles of the model’s head is adjusted so that she looks towards the viewer, emphasing the watches in her wrist, which replace the Swiss flag, and the word `Swatch´ is twice the size of `Suisse´(Switzerland) in the original poster; he mentions how Scher´s posters continues to provoke discussion reinforcing the assumptions expressed by Garrett, that the past is a bottomless pit´ available for postmodern ransacking by designers.[Ibid:80,81]
Page 81: Poynor starts to say how Kalman and his New York company became strongly identified as champions of `Vernacular´- design produced by ordinary people rather than professional designers, such has roadside painting, shop front lettering and posters…. Poynor explains that Vernacular design’s appeal lay on its authenticity, the sense that it’s was a natural, unfiltered expression of the way people felt ….typical of the design `s elite’s professional class. He says how Kalman admired the `invisible ´ quality of Vernacular design, the fact that is just there, part of the landscape, a form of visual slang and the ways its seems to be from another time Poynor say that often because it is.[Ibid:81]
Page 84: Poynor says that M & Co’s works was extremely witty but his Vernacular relationship was contradictional. He questions that as a critic Kalman believes of being unacceptable to steal ideas from design history, why was it acceptable for him even desirable, to `unabashedly steal´ from Vernacular sources? He than argues that a surely a sophisticated metropolitan design firm that made clever use of naive examples of `un-design´ or `non-design´ came perilously close to the kind of knowingness and calculation that Kalman railed against in other areas as of the design profession?
He continues to questions if there wasn’t an unspoken assumption in such borrowings, as visual ideas were transported from two categories of design every day, designing that he categorises as low culture, and the professional design, that he describes as high culture, he questions if the high was inherently superior? Poynor talks about the joke of a professional designer receiving a the `Design without Designers ´ leaflet understood immediately that’s its typography was `wrong and, since it came from AIGA, that it had been purposely designed to look like it was produced by someone with out `rules´ of good design. He then concludes that to get the joke was to collude in its mockery of naïve popular sources. [Ibid:84]
Poynor continues to speak about the success of Kalman and how he joined the largest design firm in the world at that time. He says that a Journal aimed at CEOs said about them `how two guys with art degrees can do more than for your business than a conference room full of MBAs.´[Ibid:84]
Page 87: Poynor speaks about Charles S. Anderson, a designer at Duffy Design Group, before setting up his own studio in 1989. He says that Anderson’s interest in `un-designed vernacular imagery began at high school when met a retired commercial artist, Clyde Lewis, who left with hundreds of hand-drawns cuts, which has become Anderson’s starting point for his collection.[2003:87]
Poynor mentions about Andersons success he mentions about CSA Line of Art Archive Catalog vol.I, containing 7,777 examples from an archive that now numbered hundreds of thousands of images taken from old books magazines, catalogues, Mtch book designs, cocktail napkins and vintage packaging.
He mentions on that Anderson `s archive of clients included Nike, Levi’s, Ray Gun magazine, Nissan, Lee Jeans and MTV and advertising companies.[Ibid:87,88]
Page 89: Poynor says that in the mid 90s commercial ventures deployed postmodern nostalgia to trigger reassuring emotions in consumers; he continues to say how Gap in 1994 has launched a new division Old Navy, which would sell clothes and accessories for adults and children, he explains how the new stores were committed to a concept of retailing that Old Navy ´s creative director, labelled as `shop-tainment´ .Poynor says that in order to communicate the sense of Old Navy offered fan for all family and that they choose an old fashion identity from 1930s to 1960s while giving a look invitingly new, an act that was later on characterized by a writer as `nouveau-retro´.He says that the bright pastiche was splashed across hang-tags, pocket stickers, packaging, advertising and in store.[Ibid:89]
Page 90: Poynor mention about Paula Scher `s cover Print’s parody issue, and again how her `Complete Genealogy of Graphic Design´ purports to show how impossibly convoluted genealogical tree records every illicit communication from Confucius ,Alexander the Great and Abraham, via likes of Caledonia and Helvetica, to arrive eventually, century later, at Milton Gaser.[2003:90]
Poynor mentions about the launch of Spy magazine in 1986 and how hyperactive info-graphics look that was once sarcastic and studious changed its face and became the most distinctive calling cards of postmodern graphic design.[Ibid:90]
Page 91: Poynor says how Spy was in all sense a postmodern product and self-conscious about every detail of its own mechanics and how in 1988 they even published `A Spy Guide to Postmodern Everything´ which presented readers baffled by this word that seems to have the ability to be everywhere with handy hints for recognizing postmodern artefacts in architecture , painting, television, literature, cuisine and graphic design; he then gives a series of examples of the article and describes that it was fuzzy layout overloaded with words all of them cutting ,an interlocking puzzle that had to be tackled piece by piece.[Ibid:91]
I like the way Poynor is descriptive of the whole layout by explaining in detail the all spread of the magazine.
Put images from magazine Alexandre Isley
Page 95: Poynor concludes this chapter questioning if the works with pastiche represent what In Frederic Jameson’s words, `the failure of the new, the imprisonment in the past´? He mentions about Encyclopedia Persona and how it depends on our familiarity with conventions being parodied, and says that this is a bound to reaffirm and legitimate them to a degree.
Poynor then goes to say how that it is significant that design’s obsessive preoccupation with past emerged in the 70s when fast innovation had grown stagnant and he gives his opinion about designers with aspirations to make it new look at modernism with a mixture of envy and nostalgia to a time when novel inventions seemed to pour from the drawing board. Poynor says that the 1990s was a liberating medium f new graphic sensibility, but also boundless ecstatic, rule-free space in which cultural tendencies already identified by modernism thinkers would find even fuller and more elastic styles expressions.
No more rules
Page 96: In this chapter Poynor talks about the new era the introduction of the computer he says that American West Coast designers such as April Greiman and the Émigre team, Rudy VanderLans and ZuZana Licko, acquired Apple Macintosh computers as soon as they were introduced in 1984, he mention that for Greiman , the computer was a `new paradigm, a conceptual “magic slate” opening a new era of opportunity for graphic artists; he say that Greiman understood that the those trained in the traditional methods might protest. He confirms that the computer has changed the design process in fundamental ways. [2003:96]
Poynor makes a comparison between the computer and the traditional method, how the pencil makes physical marks and even if these marks are erased they would still be some traces would often remain. By contrast he says the computer’s `undo´ function, allows something to be removed without trace he says that gives every aspect of design provisional, less certain quality. [Ibid: 96]
We have to look the computer nowadays, not as the most important tool in design, but have as helping hand tool for the designer, to speed up the whole process of design, of course that with certain technologies the quality process is lost, in order to make things faster. I agree with Poynor that the computer was certainly a fundamental change in the design process.
Page 97: Poynor mention about an article titled the `New Primitives´, VanderLans, and Licko quoted Piet Zwart with approval-`We are the primitives of the new technical era´- and argued that coarse bitmaps could basis of a new computer aesthetics.
Poynor said how they prophesied by saying: ` Much of the scepticism and disfavour currently attached to digital images will disappear as a new generation of designers enters the profession.´Poynor says the were soon proved to be correct. [2003:97]
Poynor says that it was Greiman, though, who was responsible for perhaps the most ambitious early attempt to put desktop technology thru its paces. She produced a 2×6 foot (0.6×1.8 metre), double-sided poster collage, designed for the design Quarterly magazine in 1986, it was a landmark he says not only in technical terms, but as a self-authored, cosmological statement that depended on electronic tools for its conception and realization and reflected and exuberant, uncompromised digital sensibility. Poynor then explains that Greiman process to achieve that: six month gathering materials; three months of sketching with Macpaint and digitalizing images with MacVision; then three-month composing, layering and stretching the image with MacDraw before printing it out on a laser printer.Poynor says that was a task that almost came close to defeat the technology. (It was definitely time-consuming and a test for this new technology). [Ibid: 97, 99]
Page 99:Poynor explains the layout of the Poster by Greiman he mentions that the cover posed the question `Does it makes sense?´ he says that Greiman answer the question with a quotation from Wittgenstein: `If you give it a sense, it makes sense´ and on the poster another Wittgenstein quotation suggests `the sense lies far in the background´.Poynor says that while some questioned whether the poster made sense he thinks that the project was significant as a sign of how the designer was becoming increasingly central as a creative personality, to the presentation perception and consumption of the postmodern Graphic design.[Ibid:99]
Page 101: Poynor says about the work of P. Scott Makela created in 1990 to advertise `Cranbook Design: The new Discourse ´exhibition, the brain itself becomes a`pure screen´ framed by pulsing field of video texture, across which lines of type of scroll… he continues to describe the it , Poynor said it was inspired by cyberpunk fiction and `wirehead|hacker technologies´ he describes Mkela as one of the most eccentric, excessive designers of the period in Makela´s words: `100% digital´.[Ibid:101,102]
Page 102: Makela says: `Awareness of may own working methods has helped me to visualize others ´data processing needs. Every day I make multiple phone calls while my Macintosh runs up six software programs at once. I send faxes and e-mails. And I am productively addicted to good electronic bulletin boards. I watch Obscure TV stations foe interesting images or textures, and I enjoy CD´s played at high volume.’ Poynor says about Makela hybrid font called Dead History and recorded s«an albi«um of pounding techno music for Émigre with the titles like `Telepresence´ and `Wanting with Baudrillard Poynor describes Makela´s design with hyperreal, super bright aspects of a dream or hallucination.[Ibid:102]
Page 103:Poynor shows an a similar sense of immersion and compare the work between Makela and The Designers Republic (DR), founded in Sheffield, England in 1986 by Ian Anderson. Poynorsays that were Makela favoured photographic or televisual images set in realistic, representational spaces, DR work is far more graphic, unfolding the kinetic(energy)abandon across the two-dimensional flatness of the printed sheet. DR, like Makela`s seem fully adapted to postmodern reality ….. yet perhaps without Makela`s sense of optimism.[Ibid:103]
Poynor mentions how influential computers-driven aesthetic emerged that would prove highly influential as the 1990s progressed, particularly in Europe, he goes on to mention the styles and essence is replication. Shapes and symbols-dots , circles, hearts, parallel lines and graph paper grids multiply to form sheets of graphic texture that modulate and merge like scientific chart and diagrams in the process of mutation.Embembed in this graphics fields are logos, cartoons character, fragments of Japanese he mentions how obsessed DR are with an imaginary Japan.[Ibid:103]
Page 104: Poynor says that DR inspirations were electronic gadgets, `magic´ technology, UFOs, films such as Blade Runner and science fiction in general, and `computers as big as planets as small as tear drops.´
Poynor mentions the projects undertook by DR like Wrap records , Sony, MTV, Warner Brothers and the Ministry of Sound.[Ibi:104]
Page 105: Poynor says that in the mid 90s the three-dimensional modelling became almost like a house style, he says that Me Company a company based in London, once again inspired by the Science fiction and Japanese popular culture were inspiration for digital worlds that are entirely artificial yet obscenely vivid and real, impossible techno-spaces built up from dazzling reflections and shimmering, glutinous matter.
He mentions how the cyborg an artificial fusion of man and machine was seen frequently. Poynor names the projects done by Me Company for singer Björk, The single Army of Me (1995) he explains how the transformations made in the star in which her image is complety effaced, on Bachelorette (1997) Björk otherworldly likeness, caught in the reflection and shadows casts by spores of shining pollen, merges with a cyborgian garden in which the `plants´ themselves appear to be organics robot hybrids. Finally with Alarm Call (1998) her features are reduce to a series of pulsing, cyberscan contours, composed of luminescent dots, as the singer becomes a ghost in the digital machine.[Ibid:105,106]
Page 108: Poynor says that in 1994 Barry Decks speed-slanted typeface Cyberotica released by Thirst, captured the genre rush of libidinal energy with cleverly anthropological eye he says aboy a Prague cultural magazine Zivel illustrated a special issue about pornography with a cover showing a computer graphic of a tumescent porn pig-an ambiguous icon for the complexities of `posthuman´ sexuality.
Poynor mention the typeface designed by J. Abbott Miller Rhizome (1996) and Polymorphous (1996)[Ibid:108]
Page 110: In Fast Forward(1993), a catalogue for a series of Students projects at California Institute of Arts, Jeffery Keedy cites Science fiction writer William Gibson `s portrayal- in books such as Neuromancer (1984) of a future which cybernetics, genetics, neurochemistry,echology, designer drugs and technology are on a collision course with the pop culture and there is a hallucinogenic melding of mind and information’s structures´. Poynor shows some opinions Keedy have regarding the computer he says: …the most important aspect of the computer`s impact ion design is not the way that thinks look, but how `the computer influences the creation of meaning´.[Ibid:110,111]
Page 111: Poynor says that spirit of Sweeping Digital change was most fully and persuasively expressed in Wired magazine (1993), Poynor says that Wire’s use of design was striking he says that in the first issue, the opening words of Marshall McLuhan’s The Medium is the Massage float across the surface of three digital collages created by Illustrator designer Erik Adigard.` The medium or process of our time is – electric technology- is reshaping and restructuring patterns of social ….is forcing us to reconsider an re-evaluate practically every thought, every action, and every institution formerly taken from granted´.Poynor says that behind Mc Luhan´words drifted melting images of a hand, a keyboard, a brain and people watching television translated into hallucinogenic shades of orange, green and pink poynor says that this pattern would repeat in every issue.[Ibid:111]
Page 112:Poynor describes what Brenda Laurel wrote and says that in 1996,Wired published the first three years ‘ worth of spreads as a book, Mind Grenades: Manifestos from the future, a title that suggests – like much of Makela´s work – a nostalgia for the future that has yet to happen and seems on present evidence, unlikely to arrive soon.
He says, how the dotcom bubble and virtual reality, once touted has the answer to everything , is the least of our concerns. He mention that wire itself has become a business magazine like any other and people find there were more attached to physical reality comparing it to the early 90´s digital visionaries like to think.[Ibid:112,113]
Page 115: Poynor says that United States was a forefront of technological design change from mid-80s and mid-90s in the late 90s other graphic cultures, which had been slower to embrace the computer’s possibilities, began to pull design in new experimental directions.
He mentions how young graphic designers from Switzerland the birth place of the International Style moved into the professional spot light. Büro Destruct (founded in Berne in 1994), Malti Woodtli and Norm (both based in Zurich).Wooldtli combines old and new versions of programs to produce deliberate errors that provoke the unexpected.Poynor says that norm too devise ´laws´ for each assignment, discarding them for new rules when the project is completed. He mentions their book Introduction he explains that is a studio manifesto that seeks to return graphic design to zero. Introduction divides graphic representation into four categories :things that occur in the two-dimensional space, but refer to something that exists in the three-dimensions; things with no reference to the three –dimensional space; things that refer to nothing or to themselves; things that are unforeseeable, not yet known.
Concluding this chapter Poynor says postmodern digital design culture has spawned an inventive and energetic global subculture that often appear to exist mainly to talk to itself about itself.[Ibid :115, 117]
No more rules
Page 118: Poynor says that the emergence of the `designer as author´ is one of the key ideas in graphic design of the postmodern period and the contradicts and say that is also one of the more problematic ideas, since, as some strands of critical theory would have it, the very notion of an author as a validating source of authority for cultural work is outdated, backward looking and reactionary. Poynor mention Barthes a postmodern cultural critic and he say that he makes a perfectly normal and reasonable argument he says that Barthes notes that while we search for the explanation of the a literary work in the life of the man of woman who produced it, in reality a piece of writing is a `tissue o quotations that owes everything to the mass of writing that proceeded it…. the reader not the writer, who decides the meaning of the multiple quotations that compose a text …and the it is consequently the reader to whom the future of writing depends. He says that Barthes famously concludes: `the birth of the reader must be at cost of the death of the Author´. [Ibid: 118,119]
Page 119: Poynor says that as seen before in chapter 2 designers attuned to postmodern theory and its popular expressions have often evoked the reader or viewer using similar ideas and terms. Their aim they said was to not to impose a single closed and restrictive reading, but to provide open structures that encourage the audience’s participations and interpretation. Poynor says that Professional rhetoric’s insisted in the 1960s and even today that design was essentially an anonymous activity and it many ways with was and still is: few members of the public would be able to name even one graphic designer.[Ibid:119]
I m from the same opinion about designers being anonymous even today members of the public don’t know many designers names if they do in is definitely a small minority.
Page 120: Poynor names a few graphics designers like Neville Brody, David Carson, Tibor Kalman that attracted attention in the mainstream media, where they were presented as significant shapers of contemporary visual cultural.
He says other people may view graphic designers has as group whose job is to take a client message and express it as effectively as possible in a spirit of neutral professionalism; he then argues that the motives that lead someone to be came a designer is more complicate than this suggests he says that an act of design can never be entirely neutral he goes on to say that designers have always insisted that to function effectively they need to question and perhaps` rewrite´ the whole the clients brief and how they have argued that the clients understanding of the communication problem may be imperfect and that is why they need they help in the first place.[Ibid:120]
Page 121: Poynor continues in this controversy about seeing a designer as an author, he mentions that before the late 80s, few designers not even the most idiosyncratic would have described their own design practice in terms of graphic authorship.´Poynor say that the phrase as `designer as author´ didn’t not achieve wider currency until he mid-1990s, although it is primarily in the a North American phenomenon, and remains controversial and prone to misunderstanding. He then gave an example of Bruce Mau as the most self-aware and deliberate exponents to the idea he said he wanted to occupy the role of a `producer as author.´ Poynor says that Bruce Mau publication of zone 1|2, a collection of academic essays about the contemporary city that was nothing but dry or detached, I was a desirable object in which the graphic designer has played a significant shaping role. [Ibid: 121]
Page 123 & 124: Others designers have followed Maus Poynor says that Ellen Lupton and J.Abbot Miller were two of the significant designer|authors to emerge in the late 1980s and they produce an alliance in a three word manifesto which that they titled Design|Writing|Research they have done the Abs of :the Bauhaus and Design Theory in (1991), he says that Lupton ´s `Visual Dictionary ´ applies this principle to the exploration of four techniques :graph, translation grid and figure.
Page 145& 147: Poynor says the cause of authorship advances, particularly in the United States. In 1999 the School of Visual Arts in New York established the first Master of fine Arts degree in design on the idea of `The designer as an author .´ Its founder the Art director Steven Heller. Poynor opinion in relation to authorship is clear he says `that authorship as a branch of design does not means it lacks potential or that it will not grow. The signs suggest otherwise he goes on and says that problems of authorship have been exaggerated and it’s paradoxical ,to say at least, to vest so much authority in speculative critical texts that set out to challenge that authority…. We live in a world where authority is increasingly dispersed within vast corporate entities that conceal their inner workings from the public gaze…..by committing themselves….. Individual’s authors he says, in brackets ,those supposedly problematic `singular points of origins´ he closes brackets , encourage others readers to explore, experience and question the world in rich, open and ultimately empowering ways.[Ibid:145, 147]
In this chapter Poynor has expressed his views on how designers can step up to make a difference and became `designer as an author he goings into detail expressing his views and points out that regardless the controversy behind many designers are taking this role .
No more Rules
Page 148: Poynor starts this chapter saying that The design approaches discussed so far were always controversial he then compares the critics to an old guard used to working in particular ways refusing to accept that anything about the new work might be valid he mention how at others times postmodern design critics framed arguments which have never received an adequate reply. He says that the first critic let to fly in 1991 was the New York modernist Designer Massimo Vigneliin his view, Émigré magazines and he quotes Vigneliin :`an aberration of culture´ and a `factory of garbage´. He says that the following year Paul Rand, he describes him as the elder statesman of American design, he mentions how he weighed in with an essay titled `Confusion and Chaos: The Seduction of Contemporary Graphic design´. He says that for Rand, designs problem was twofold: its lack of humility and originality, and its obsession with matters of superficial styles and he goes on and says that Rand started to mention a long list of stylistic errors that begins with squiggles, pixels, doodles, dig bats and ziggurats, works his way thru ‘indecipherable, zany typography´ and concludes with whatever special “special effects” a computer makes possible.[Ibid:148,149]
Because of such comments and critiques Rand was criticised by the young generations of designers when he published the book called Paul Rand: A Designers Art and a trilogy Design Form and Chaos, in the book called Paul Rand the writer says that: Rand critiques did no way to diminish Rand’s achievements but they have challenged his relevance, he says that by 1993 Modernism was under heavy attack by academics and hothouse habitués as a cold, rigid and bankrupt style that had lost much of its relevance as a corporate identity devolved into litany of clichés. [1999, p.221]
Page 151: Poynor gives his opinion and says that what also such criticism ignores is the degree to which postmodern design might function as a critical practice.[2003:151]
Modernist designers will always view post modernism has an over the top style.
But I ask where is design heading will modernist accept that Postmodernism is as well creative and expressive way to produce graphic design.
Page 171:Rick Poynor says that not for the first time it seemed that the only way forward might be to go back , as Rudy VanderLans suggested in 1991 at the height of postmodern experimentation ‘ Does all experimentation in graphic design lead to a simplification of graphic design? Are the graphic designers who concern themselves with complex solutions merely slow learners who try out the wildest schemes only to come to one conclusion, that less is more?
Yet to go back in any stylistic sense, to imitate for instance the typographic language of modernism, also to run the risk of tumbling into the abyss of postmodernism pastiche. The purpose goes to the heart of the purpose and meaning of graphic design.
Poynor finishes the book with unanswered questions he says :
To what sustained uses, other than its familiar and largely unquestioned commercial uses, might graphic design be applied?
How , and even more to the point, where should designers who wish to engage in a rule-breaking postmodernism resistance position themselves?
And finally, given some of the problems of postmodern visual communication discussed in the book.
What forms, in terms of style, might an oppositional graphic design assume at this point? [Ibid:171]
I guess there no answers for these questions they will stay open until the gap that separates modernism and postmodernism will be filled.