Plakat Schriften – type specimens

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Plakat Schriften – Type specimen catalog -produced by by D stempel AG. foundry Frankfurt, Germany. This is one of the better catalogs I’ve come across. Huge Specimen samples and Bold color. Includes examples of Helvetica, Sistina, Schmalfette Binder style, Enge Fette Plak, Schmalfette Memphis, Kraftige Balzac, Halbfette Elan and Ziffern. Theres not date listed but it must be around the early 60s since Helvetica was created in 1957.

La Rinascente poster 1974

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Super rad skiing poster by E. Mariani for La Rinascente. Hundreds of colored vertical arrows make up the image.Year of creation 1974. Everytime I see this poster it makes me think of the White Stripes video with the legos.

Screw the train, I’m taking the funliner!

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What did they feed these kids in the 60s? Their HUGE! They have no chance of riding the funliner considering their heads are bigger then the whole plane. I don’t think they want to ride in it though, I think they want to eat it.

Cool kids activity book from 1964 produced for United Airlines. Illustrations by Dick Flor. Includes a tragic tale of some campers getting their precious hamburger buns stolen by some juvenile chipmunks. Great stuff!

Hats off to Hans Hartmann

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Update 11.21.07
I’d like to thank Felix of design book stories and Thierry Blancpain for tracking down some additional information on Hans Hartmann.

- He was born in 1913. Died in 1991.

- He originally came from the canton of Argovia, next to Zurich and studied at the Kunstgewerbeschule Zürich. He then went to Bern and among other things designed the (still in use) logo of the national train company SBB. In addition, he designed a fair amount of post stamps.

- The Hans Hartmann estate seems to be in the communal library in berne.

- Lastly, here is a short bio on Hans Hartmann (In german).

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Hans Hartmann is one of the lesser known designers that lived in Switzerland during the 1950s. A google search of his name brings up almost nothing. Outside of his native country his work seems to be lost in obscurity. The only information I have on him comes from a small monograph produced in 1958.

Most of his work centered around companies that were in or around Bern, Switzerland. This included designs for PTT, F. Gygi + Co. and Teppichhaus Bossart & Co. Most likely his contemporaries (Armin Hofmann, Emil Ruder in Basel , Josef Muller Brockann in Zurich) located to the North of Bern would of been aware of his work. However, I was unable to find any information that suggested any collaborations with these other designers.

If anyone has any information related to Hans or his design work, please contact me. It would be great if we could build a more complete resource on this talented designer. Thanks to the poster connection for the top 2 images.

The little polar bear : Rudolf Lukes

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The Little Polar Bear who didn’t want to learn to swim c1964. Text by George Theiner with illustrations by Rudolf Lukes. This is one of the tougher kids books to find with illustrations by Mr. lukes. The drawings of the Bears and seals are locked into the book by some sort of sliding paper system. As you you turn the pages the illustrations pop out of the page and bring the characters to life. This book was featured in The San Francisco Center For the Book’s exhibition entitled Show Me a Story: Children’s Books & the Technology of Enchantment.

Map proves Zurich is pink

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Zurich never looked better in pink. Heres a promotional item produced by the Official tourists office of Zurich, Switzerland. I’m guessing it dates back to the early to mid 1950s. Layout and printing by Orell Fussli Arts Graphiques. I was able to find other projects designed by Orell Fussli but I couldn’t find any information on the firm itself. If anyone knows anything, please email me.

Dimension abc : Wood type specimens

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Dimensions Abc – This is a promotional piece from 1966 for a new paper produced by Simpson Lee paper company called Talisman. They chose wood type to compliment the texture of the paper. I love the layout and the ink is laid on here thicker then maple syrup. Looks like its part of a series since its labeled volume #9 winter 1966-1967.

The paper companies during this time period (late 1940s-mid 1960s) were cranking out some incredible pieces. Just look at the work Bradbury Thompson was creating for Westvaco, Marquandt paper’s - Design and paper series (including Erik Nitsche and Ladislav Sutnar) as well as Champion papers’ Imagination series. I will be posting some of these in the weeks to come.

Charles Harper: Illustrations for Ford Times

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Charles Harper’s work looks just as fresh and exciting today as it must of looked 40 years ago. Its been great to see a renewed interest in his illustrations mostly due to the recent release of Todd Oldham’s book Charley Harper: An Illustrated Life. Heres a small sample of Charles’ work for Ford Times. The issues featured above are from the mid to late 60s. In addition be sure to check out the Charles Harper Flickr group. Enjoy!

Bernice Myers : Olivier

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Olivier – L’ours Savant – Illustrations by Bernice Myers – c1956

Erik Nitsche : Design and paper #34

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Erik Nitsche – Design and paper #34 195?. Part of a series put out by Marquardt and Company.  After you’ve absorbed the photos above check out this killer collection of Erik Nitsche designs put together by the people at Bustbright.

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