Design Industry Publications
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Publications produced by design industry insiders, for colleagues, students and clients, are a unique form of design history in their own right. Design values and concepts have often been introduced for the first time in such publications, as a result making them rare and collectible. Such publications include promotional pamphlets and brochures, textbooks, magazines and sample books.
Design & Paper, U&lc (Upper & Lower Case Journal) and PM Magazine are three examples of magazines geared towards designers and design enthusiasts, with outstanding attention given to layout, artwork, typography and paper. PM Magazine, which ran from 1934-1942 (and was then succeeded by A-D Magazine), showcased U.S. and European design talent as well as cutting-edge production and reproduction technologies, featuring actual specimens. Three special issues of the magazine published from 1938-1939 would come to be known as “The Bauhaus Issues,” and represent the movement’s transmission to America, with contributions from Walter Gropius and Herbert Bayer. Czech designer Ladislav Sutnar first outlined how to use the horizontal area of a double-page spread for a continuous visual flow in a special issue of Design & Paper that he designed and authored in 1943. U&lc was a typography journal started by Herb Lubalin, Aaron Burns, and Edward Rondthaler in 1974 as a way to display typefaces for the International Typeface Corporation. Over the years, other affiliates included Edward Gottshall, Steven Heller, Hermann Zapf, Ed Benquit, Aldo Novarese, and many others. It ceased publication in 1999.
Westvaco Inspirations was a graphic arts publication issued by the Westvaco Corporation to highlight typography, photography, and other graphic innovations on papers manufactured at its mills. Bradbury Thompson began working with the corporation in 1938 and produced 61 of its issues, transforming it into a leading avant-garde publication. Likewise, in 1975, the global design firm Pentagram began producing a series of signature annual documents for clients and colleagues, known as the Pentagram Papers. Each highly collectible set of papers is centered on a specific topic, such as rural Australian mailboxes, pop architecture in New Jersey, and the Savoy ballroom, and a collected edition was published in 2006.
Countless designers have also published on their own theories and techniques in the form of free-standing academic and artistic monographs. Alfred Tolmer’s Mise en Page features page after page of creative layout ideas using gorgeous paper and type specimens, and would have a lasting influence on the advertising industry. In the 1970s, Czech designer and typographer Oldřich Hlavsa influenced an entire generation of designers and shared his knowledge by way of the 3-part set Typographia and his Typografická Písma Latinková (1957), with the English translation (shown here) published in 1960.