After going through an eclectic, baroque, and iconic phase, today’s design is again taking its visual cues from functionalism and pragmatism. Young graphic designers and illustrators are working in a way that is influenced by the principles of classic modernism. They avoid excess or exaggeration to create enduring work of the highest quality.
The Modernist is a collection of work in graphic design and illustration that is created with minimal intrusions. The deliberately limited palette of colors, tools, and geometric forms that it uses makes the work seem both contemporary and timeless.
The book makes clear that today’s work does not simply copy the classic design of the 1960s and 1970s. Rather, it seamlessly includes the best aspects of the 1990s such as vector graphics and construction. Although computers do not dominate this design, they are clearly used as tools to play with elements that did not yet exist in the past and to merge the components and styles at hand in the best possible way.
The Modernist documents the current trend of a reduced, matter-of-fact, and practical design approach. It presents examples of unobtrusive but effective design solutions that appear to have been created in a past era. Instead, the book shows that it is only our idealistic conception of modernism that gives earlier work attributes that it never actually had.
The discovery of classical modernism in current graphic design.
Today’s designers and illustrators are synthesizing the best elements from past eras of graphic design to create a new visual language with a reduced and rational approach. The Modernist documents this uniquely contemporary, yet timeless aesthetic that is built upon the rediscovery and seamless melding of classical type elements and collage of the 1950s, the geometric patterns and graphic elements of the 1960s and 1970s, and the vector graphics and computer-aided montage of the 1990s. With its fresh perspective on the legacy of past craftsmanship and quality in outstanding current work, The Modernist expands our understanding of what modern graphic design can be.