Over the last seven years, Jens Müller has been collecting and compiling modern logos created from 1940 to 1980. As Müller puts it, this was the golden age of the modernist aesthetic in design, architecture, art, product design. And to a point he is right. Some of the most visually memorable brand marks and logos come from this four decade period. Müller’s collection is what makes up the content of Aachen’s 6000 page tome Logo Modernism.
The book covers pretty much every business and organization of note, and represents a sweeping retrospective modernism and how the style changed over time. Broken into specific sections the book’s main chapters cover Geometric, Effect, and Typographic. Each sub-chapter breaks down each style even further into sections such as dots and squares, overlays, alphabet, color, etc.The book features an introduction from Jens Müller on the history of logos, and an accompanying essay by R. Roger Remington on modernism and graphic design. In addition there are series of designer profiles on masters of the craft Paul Rand, Yusaku Kamekura, and Anton Stankowski focusing on their legendary work.
In typical Taschen heritage, the book is physically huge. at 10 by 14 inches in size and 432 pages of content. And as always from Taschen, the book is multilingual. It’s available for pre-order and this just made my list of books to add to the reference library. Oh and it’s affordable. Just $69.00 on the Taschen site.
Counter -Print has released a new book titled Alphabet Logo. It is a compendium of logos designed, with letters from what else… the alphabet.
The book contains over 500 logos from some of the worlds best designers, showcasing companies like; Bond Creative, Bruce Mau Design, Hype Type Studio, Pentagram, Stockholm Design Lab, Wolff Olins and more. It looks like a great design reference book and a ton of inspiration.
Some of these I like better than others. I think Burger King should seriously consider going with the hand lettered logo created by Sara Marshall as part of her lettering project Brand by Hand. Other’s like the Coca-Cola logo just aren’t doing it for me. None the less it’s an interesting project, especially when you consider just how hot hand lettering is these days.
One of the the things I really love about these is the skill of execution. By that I mean it is solid hand lettering, that looks good. Not some sketchbooky I don’t give a rip about things like kerning, stuff which seams to have gained huge ground in the design community as of late. As someone that learned how to hand letter decades ago by hand painting store front sings, I have a solid appreciation for the skills it takes to letter like this.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and in the case of a logo or brandmark that is a golden rule. Your logo needs to communicate what the company, brand or product is visually with little or no help from words. This isn’t always the case, but a good logo can tell you what the company, or brand is about in a quick glance.
The video below is simply wonderful. It is the impression logos leave on a five year old as they are shown to her. One very interesting thing, is her response at age five to some very well known logo types. As you watch the video, listen for her reaction as certain global brands are shown.