Now I enjoy graphic design, I really do, but I’m not ashamed to admit that it takes a seriously swanky book cover or magazine redesign to get me hot under the collar. But even I can appreciate the brilliance of legendary designer Erik Nitsche and seeing as Saturday would have been his birthday, we decided to remind ourselves of the man’s sheer visual genius.
Born in 1908, Erik passed away 15 years ago, and his work (which ranged from art direction, book design, illustration and typography to advertising and packaging design… Phew!) has now come full circle to fill the gap that many young designers dream of filling; uncluttered, geometric and iconic images, with a smattering of colour which begs to be categorised as “vintage” but, actually, deserves far more in terms of recognition.
Working in Germany and Paris in the 1930s and 40s and later in New York and Connecticut, Erik found himself creating imagery which merged the rationalism popular to Bauhaus with more Art Deco inspired references, which perhaps accounts for his popularity among employers. Especially worth checking out is his extensive sci-fi-esque work for General Dynamics Corporation, an American aerospace company, for whom he created imagery more worthy of charmingly antiquated films than an engineering company. (Those curled corners are 100% genuine, graphics geeks, and don’t they just look lovely?)
- Give thanks, and join us in the weekly feast that is the Best of the Web
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- Seoul-based studio Chung Choon applies an elegance and simplicity to its posters
- See the work of some of Nick Knight's most impressive new protégés
- Designer Chloe Pannatier looks at fakes and risk in art and money
- Jonathan Barnbrook talks us through designing David Bowie's new album artwork
- Should illustrators be treated like designers?
- Anthony Burrill tells us about his numerous Etsy WORK HARD rip-offs
- Colourful masses with a Memphis aesthetic in Mariano Pascual’s illustrated alphabet
- Japanese illustrator Nimura Daisuke is back with his charmingly naughty gifs
- Grey London's thoughtful, powerful and innovative new campaign for Tate Britain