Monday, April 18, 2011

Saul Bass - Symbolic Design

Every day I'm learning something new.  On Friday, at a friend's quasi-housewarming gather, I was engaged in a conversation with music ninja, Alex, and graphic designer and artist Rheanna Fancypants about logo design.  She introduced me to the work of Saul Bass.  As the undisputed master of graphic arts during his time, his mind and hand created the most recognizable icons.  With his clean lines, geometric shapes and structures, echoing typography and eye capturing simplicity we recognize his art and the institution or title of work that it represents with only a glimpse.  I won't list the body of work that was produced during his masterful career - I need only display them and you understand the significant contributions he has made to the world of graphic design, marketing, market media design and art in general.

Image from Joe Blogs

During my years in University, I became enthralled by symbols and semiotics.  I feverishly digested the work of Dick Hebdige.  I was and still am fascinated by the way we adopt symbols and the process that it takes to create inferences and agreed upon concepts based on an image.  With just one look at Bass' designs your mind becomes flushed with meaning.  His simple graphics embodies the constructed notions that we have about a word, movie, a company, or a brand.

I had mentioned in my previous posts that I have become a fan of Nick Tassone's work and have bought a couple pieces of his mixed media prints.  Clearly, Bass' work has great influence on Tassone's:

Matt Needle's work also draws heavy influence from Bass:

Matt Needle
And with that, I have now found the latest piece of art work that I will frame underneath the enlarged pink print of a picture of my parents in the late 70's:
Made by me!

I was filled with smiles when I gazed upon the illustrations of the book "Henri's Walk to Paris", which was designed by Saul Bass, himself:
Image from ohdeeoh

But this one is my absolute favourite:

I'll have to ponder about what this image means to me and why I'm so attracted to it.  Thanks Saul Bass, for making me think.

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