Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Discussion Point 2

Select two innovative typographic designers - one pre-digital (1984), the other contemporary. Provide a brief comparative analysis of their contributions to typographic practice supported by relevant examples of their work.

Robert Massin (1925)

Massin reflected on the culture of the written word, making unmatched links between letter and image, writing and design. He had a flair for graphic design. Massin redefined the means of letterform – he edited book club’s newsletters and then designed the covers. He invented the term art director, experimenting with topographic interpretation and went beyond the conventions of a book layout. Massin crossed disciplined and specialisations, interpreting topography – collected vernacular and hand-drawn alphabets. He never taught his craft he just created; today he is known as the unsung hero of graphic heritage.

 Jaime Reid (1947 -)

Reid’s was the ‘unbuttoned’ part of tradition; he is one of Britain’s top anti-establishment painter, image pirate, and sloganeer. He visually defined ‘punk,’ and its icons and the Sex Pistols. He is responsible for the ‘cut-and-paste’ of the Punk movement, remixing 1960s imagery with the 1970s punk ethic. His works mock authority and sexuality.


Comparing these two artist one thing stood out – they both went against the tradition, broke the boundaries of traditional methods of their art both in material and concept. Massin and Reid weren’t afraid to try something new, and experiment with new ideas. Massin a pre-digital artist focused on handmade, 2D works and Reid made use of the new materials available, using more colour and bolder topics of influence, creating a talking point. Reid’s works explored layers and the combination of materials, to create poster-like works that had a clear message. Massin used typography in a brand new way, experimenting with the shapes, weights and heights of the alphabet. Reid was sending a message, work in the 20th Century isn't restricted - provocative and interesting works conjure up new thoughts and ultimately it was his efforts and bravery which made art more interesting to view.

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