Skip to content

Graphic Modern, USA, Italy and Switzerland 1934–66

Fordham University at Lincoln Center
Center Gallery 113 West 60th Street
June 4 – July 26, 2012

Curators: Patricia Belen and Greg D’Onofrio (Kind Company)
Statement: «Modernism, an ideology that covers a range of styles, is rooted in the Russian and European avant-garde including Constructivism, Dada, De Stijl, Futurism, and the New Typography – movements which signaled a modernization of culture and society beginning in the early 20th century. Artists and designers made a conscious effort to reject ornamentation and historical styles, and instead chose to embrace abstract principles, clear communication, geometric forms and visual experimentation. graphic Modern presents Graphic Design as a fundamental component of the dissemination of early to late Modernism throughout the United States, Italy and Switzerland from the late 1930s to the middle of the 1960s. During these years, Modernism’s distinctive graphic languages moved away from its political beginnings and emerged as an integral part of mass culture, extending from advertising and printed ephemera to corporate identity.
Bringing together over 75 works from Display, Graphic Design Collection, Graphic Modern serves as an overview of this important period of design and features advertisements, periodical covers, posters and ephemera examples from design pioneers including: Herbert Bayer, Lester Beall, Robert Büchler, Confalonieri e Negri, Alan Fletcher, Karl Gerstner (Gerstner + Kutter), William Golden, Carl Graf, Franco Grignani, Max Huber, Lora Lamm, Matthew Leibowitz, Alvin Lustig, Herbert Matter, Fridolin Müller, Remo Muratore, Hans Neuburg, Erik Nitsche, Bob Noorda, Sigfried Odermatt, Giovanni Pintori, Paul Rand, Emil Ruder, Studio Boggeri, Albe Steiner, Ladislav Sutnar, Fred Troller, Massimo Vignelli, Carlo Vivarelli and Yves Zimmermann among others. The varied and unique styles and sensibilities of these designers are the foundation for the visual language of today and presumably, tomorrow. From the experimental to the playful to the rational, Modernism’s strong idealism is a testament to its vitality and long standing. graphic Modern is a unique opportunity to view such a varied collection of items, many rarely exhibited in the United States.»