Claeys’ work with his peers in fashion separates hormonally-charged concepts from formal warmth with surgical precision. Matter-of-fact romanticism, if there were such a thing.
Modernist graphic design is a bit spooky, as ethos goes. As well-meaning as its ideas of societal efficiency seem, most of its figureheads believed in the fallacy of visual “neutrality”, a feat of mental gymnastics that reveals either careless cynicism or genuine misanthropy. If design for mass transit most neatly summates Modernist thought, down to form, then the work of Margaret Calvert & Jock Kinneir for Britain’s road system is one of the very few examples I could use to posit a healthier alternative to design curricula’s Old Guard.
As investigations of career and explanatory tone go, these readings are well worth their time –