Manchester-based publication The Modernist is a firm favourite here at It’s Nice That. One of the most intriguing small-press magazines doing the rounds at the moment, it’s a quarterly dedicated to all things 20th Century architecture and design.
Each themed issue explores all manner of modernist marvels. It’s a space where personal essays on local libraries are given as much credence as in-depth features on mobile homes in the vast American midwest.
Back in December, the 29th issue of the magazine dropped — and “like BBC2 in 1967” made its first foray into the exciting world that is full-colour — but somehow more exciting than that is the news that the team has released a series of T-shirts which celebrate a quartet of the 20th Century’s most iconic female figures in design.
Designed for The Modernist Society (which is the magazine’s overarching umbrella association, catering to the sort of person who can think of no finer way to spend a weekend than ambling around Coventry cathedral in a super-comfortable pair of Mephisto shoes) by Sue Platt and Ange Wilson.
Talking about the rationale behind the featured foursome, the Society says, “It was a tough choice but we have tried to reflect different eras and different disciplines and we hope to feature more in the future.”
In the end, they plumped for Jane Drew (co-founder of the influential MARS group), Eileen Gray (architect, furniture designer, and interior architect), Ray Eames (chair fanatic and a woman described by The Modernist as “one of the coolest people of the 20th Century”) and typographic legend Margaret Calvert, the designer responsible for the road signs that most of our readers will see day in, day out, until the day they die. Or till they embrace the isolation most of us so long for and retreat into a subterranean cave system deep below the Cairngorms.