Women in Graphic Design
Why do apparently so few women feature in the history of design? Why do so few women speak at conferences? Why are previously well-known women ‘forgotten’? Are women judged today solely on the basis of their quality of work? First published in Germany, Women in Graphic Design 1890–2012 — whose contributors include Ellen Lupton, Sheila Levrant de Bretteville, Paula Scher, Tina Roth Eisenberg and Julia Hoffmann — raises and seeks to answer these questions, and in the process debunks the myth that artistic genius is solely a male thing. The antidote: an opulently illustrated volume which shines the light on accomplished women designers with 400 short biographies, samples, essays, sources and detailed discussions. The authors are Gerda Breuer and Julia Meer, and the publisher is Jovis. www.jovis.de
Here’s a little treat from the archives. This playful illustration by Seymour Chwast ran in a 1970 ad for Strathmore paper.
Little Miss Muffet is eating her curds with whey when along came a spider and sat down beside her but it looks like she didn’t run away. The ad focuses on “Irrational Fears” including arachnophobia but I’m not sure I agree that a fear of spiders is so irrational. The idea behind the campaign was to dispel irrational fears like the cost of the paper and trying “techniques that many designers are afraid to get off their tuffets and try.”
In May of 1973 this ad ran for the “Day-Glo Goes Anywhere Contest” which offered the winner Two Tickets to Anywhere!
Here’s how it worked:
Send Day-Glo your “Ticket to Anywhere” (green ticket bottom right) and “You’ll receive a free Day-Glo Design Kit, complete with color charts, felt tip markers, layout paper, and complete rules . . . Entries may be in any artistic medium, as long as Day-Glo color is part of the design.”
We just couldn’t pass up posting this ad for Art Staff from August of 1969.
How fondly we remember the good old days when art direction meant “accurate comps, mechanicals and finished art.” Bernard Tango aka “Bernie” is quite dashing too. Even though he wasn’t the “art director to win the Pan American dancing competition in 1938,” we’d hire him any day of the week!