Synopses & Reviews
Now in its second edition, this innovative look at the history of graphic design explores its evolution from the 19th century to the present day. Author Stephen J. Eskilson demonstrates how a new era began for design arts under the influence of Victorian reformers, tracing the emergence of modernist design styles in the early 20th century, and examining the wartime politicization of regional styles. Richly contextualized chapters chronicle the history of the Bauhaus and the rise of the International Style in the 1950s and '60s, and the postmodern movement of the 1970s and '80s. The book's final chapter looks at current trends in graphic design, with in-depth discussions of grunge, comic book, and graffiti aesthetics; historicism and appropriation; and the influence of technology, web design, and motion graphics.
The second edition features over 80 new images, revised text throughout, a new chapter on 19th-century design, and expanded sections on critical topics including the Swiss Style, Postmodernism, and contemporary design.
"It should be no surprise that Eskilson's study of the evolution of graphic design from Gutenberg to grunge and beyond is an oft-assigned tome for budding designers. However, one needn't be a student to appreciate Eskilson's ability to hold a narrative thread as art movements, technology, and other influences continue to broaden the scope of his topic as the book progresses. Working his way through a dense and diverse mÃ©lange of media, such as pulp magazines, photography, architecture, typefaces, logos, Nazi propaganda, movie posters, and signage, Eskilson (coauthor, Frames of Reference: Art History and the World) is an enthusiastic and informative guide. The tome is liberally peppered throughout with iconic images such as Currier and Ives prints, James Flagg's I Want YOU for U.S. Army, and Shepard Fairey's Hope, featuring Barack Obama, as well as digressions on key contributors such as Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Gustav Klimt, and movements like De Stijl. Given the sheer number of topics and concepts encompassed by graphic design, Eskilson isn't able to dwell on any specific subject for too long, which may frustrate some readers. Originally published in 2007, this newly-updated edition adds over eighty new images and revised text, making this an even more essential reference for designers as well as art historians. Photos and illus. (Feb.)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
andquot;This newly-updated edition adds over eighty new images and revised text, making this an even more essential reference for designers as well as art historians.andquot;andmdash;Publisher's Weekly, Starred Review
andquot;Art historian Eskilson has created a uniquely comprehensive, discerning, and vital history. . . . Eye-opening on many levels.andquot;
"Eskilson looks at design from the art perspective more than the others do, which is valuable because design does indeed intersect with art movements."and#8212;Steven Heller, New York Times Book Review
andquot;Eskilson . . . scrupulously tells the history of graphic design, beginning with the printing of the Gutenberg Bible to today's digital design-it-yourself pages on social-networking Web sites. What makes this history 'new' is the author's focus on the role that technology has played, for better or worse, in the evolution of design style.andquot;andmdash;Lisa Rossi, Wall Street Journal
andquot;[Eskilson] has done excellent work synthesizing a vast range of secondary literature on the history of graphic design; he has done an even stronger job amassing a body of rich, engrossing, and often surprising visual material presented via top-quality reproductions. . . . Through that mix of established landmarks and fresh finds from the archive, Eskilson goes far in enlarging the history of graphic design. . . . Anyone with a serious design library should consider acquiring Eskilson's new history. It will serve as a reliable reference and a fruitful compendium of visual ideas.andquot;andmdash;Ellen Lupton, I.D. International Design Magazine
andldquo;This second edition is one of the best accounts of the history of graphic design from the late 19th century to the present currently published in English.andrdquo;andmdash;Choice
About the Author
Stephen J. Eskilson is associate professor of art at Eastern Illinois University. He is coauthor of Frames of Reference: Art History and the World and publishes frequently on contemporary art and design.