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Before Penguin

Before Penguin

Edicions Proa, founded in 1928 in Badalona at a time of popular culture and athenaeums, is an exponent of the standard of Catalan publishing in the 1930s that came to the fore by way of an exhibition and the illustrated book: La propera festa del llibre serà de color taronja! Cinquanta anys del rellançament d’Edicions...
Spain on posters

Spain on posters

In 2005, the Division of Information, Documentaries and Publications from Spain’s Ministry of Industry, Tourism and Trade published a catalogue of official posters from Spanish tourism spanning the period between 1929 and 1959. This volume verifies how the promotion of tourism in Spain is not something recent, and, by the same token, it demonstrates contributions...
Pedro García-Ramos touring

Pedro García-Ramos touring

“And, nevertheless, the ensemble in the exhibition shapes a structured organic whole that rounds off answers, covering up possible fissures, consolidating the experiment and demonstrating the maturity and assurance of an almost philosophical work of investigation. Work that has not materialised from good taste, or a job well done, nor from the chosen profession of...
The catalogue for mobile types of Filograf

The catalogue for mobile types of Filograf

On the cover of this “Selection of printing characters”, five different types already appear: a capital “F” – which he would also use in certain time periods as an image for his “Graphic Art Institute” – a “Spanish thin semi-bold”; his own name made up of English calligraphy characters, one “Hellenic”, and, to conclude, a...
Cruz Novillo and Producers

Cruz Novillo and Producers

The first programme coordinated to unify printed and animated graphic art was used for Otto Preminger’s 1955 film The Man with the Golden Arm. The title sequence was designed by Saul Bass and featured an arm that traced the plot of the film: the drug addiction of its main character. The credits for the film...
A sharp point

A sharp point

In 1995 the “American Pencil Collectors Society” was founded in the USA, bringing together an interesting group of writing instrument collectors primarily focused on the collection of graphite lead pencils. For a number of years now, I’ve been pleased to form part of this Association, which publishes the newsletter “The Pencil Collector” as the “Official...
The graphic art of 25 years of peace

The graphic art of 25 years of peace

In Spain 1964 marked the 25th anniversary since the end of the Civil War. The convenience of using the central courtyard of the building that housed the Traffic Department’s Head Office saw an improvised workshop set up for producing a series of billboards by components of Grupo 13, who were “invited” to participate in a...
Catalan activist design by Pilar Villuendas

Catalan activist design by Pilar Villuendas

“Looking over the images produced throughout these years goes above and beyond a possible analysis of their graphic values to become a statement of the small daily history of Barcelona.” Pilar Villuendas set up her studio in the mid 1970s. Looking through the designs compiled in this recently published book “Barcelona, Urban Iconography in Transition”,...
'Arte Comercial' magazine, advertising and organization?

‘Arte Comercial’ magazine, advertising and organization?

“Arte Comercial” (Commercial Art) was one of the few examples in the Spanish publishing world of a journal specializing in the field of advertising. Founded in 1946 by Emeterio Melendreras, a professional that straddled the fields of advertising and design management, it included works by most of the graphic designers of the time: Manolo Prieto...
Jordi Blassi and the Cuenca Museum

Jordi Blassi and the Cuenca Museum

In 1966 the Museo de Arte Abstracto Español (the Museum of Spanish Abstract Art) was opened in the Casas Colgadas (Hanging Houses), in Cuenca, exhibiting a collection of paintings and sculptures by Spanish artists associated with this movement that Fernando Zóbel had been amassing, by and large, in the preceding years. The museum opening represented...
The El Corte Inglés pennant

The El Corte Inglés pennant

I remember the morning I began working as Art Director in the Publicity Department of El Corte Inglés as if it were yesterday. I was sneaking between drawing tables to introduce myself to my new Creative Director when an older man – white hair, smoking a cigar – asked me if I knew how to...
Read the images of… Alberto Corazón

Read the images of… Alberto Corazón

In 1973 the Alberto Corazón exhibition titled ” Read the image” took place at the College of Architects headquarters, Barcelona and in the Iolas Velasco Gallery, Madrid. Ferràn Cartes wrote in the college’s CAU magazine –one of the few examples of design and visual communication critique in Spanish publications (see previous post)– that “an image’s...