Q: "Moderately modern, but not futurist, book jacket design by Morrison"?

Hans Rudolf Bosshard in his book "Regel und Intuition"* on page 16 writes "and then I remember that, in a book about typography, an image of a moderately modern, but not futurist, book jacket design by Morrison". 

Unfortunately, Bosshard does not remember what the book was (neither the Stanley Morrison design nor the book about typography that he saw that image in). 

My friend Robert Oleś is preparing the Polish edition of Bosshard's "Regel und Intuition", and would like to locate the Morrison design Bosshard alludes to. 

Does it ring a bell with anyone? What might that "moderately modern, but not futurist, book jacket design by Morrison" be? 

A.

Comments

  • Chris LozosChris Lozos Posts: 950
    stumped.

  • John HudsonJohn Hudson Posts: 1,092
    edited March 18
    I'm guessing it was probably one of the books published by Victor Gollancz in the 1930s. when Morison was a director in the company and advised on book design. The distinctive yellow jackets with bold black and red sans serif lettering were Morison's most modernist design work. See, for example, the two covers included in this Eye magazine article.
  • John HudsonJohn Hudson Posts: 1,092
    PS. Note: Morison with one r
  • Adam TwardochAdam Twardoch Posts: 238
    edited March 18
    Oh, yes. Morison! 

    Thanks John, a few other people suggested that it may have been "The Intelligentsia of Great Britain" which was also part of that series and is possibly the most commonly reproduced, so a I'll stop my search. 

    Btw,  that one is reproduced e.g. here
    https://stoneletters.wordpress.com/2011/11/01/stanley-morison-and-book-jacket-design/
  • John HudsonJohn Hudson Posts: 1,092
    I wouldn't describe the design of The Intelligentsia of Great Britain as 'moderately modern'. It's a dog's breakfast of poorly conceived and executed ideas. Many of the other Gollancz jackets are more moderate, and the better for it.
  • OT: Bosshard's book deserves an English translation; it's a great little volume. Worth the time for anyone who reads German (and apparently, soon, Polish).
  • Craig EliasonCraig Eliason Posts: 567
    I wouldn't describe the design of The Intelligentsia of Great Britain as 'moderately modern'. It's a dog's breakfast of poorly conceived and executed ideas. Many of the other Gollancz jackets are more moderate, and the better for it.
    Looks to me like a pastiche of Dada typography. 
  • Nick ShinnNick Shinn Posts: 1,110
    Indeed, he was adopting a style of design he felt was appropriate to the content. It does look a bit forced, and it’s hard to know whether there is an element of parody or not, as few British or American designers of the time really “got” European modernism. 
  • Chris LozosChris Lozos Posts: 950
    It is as if someone else suggested the "modern" style and he grudgingly tried it.
  • John HudsonJohn Hudson Posts: 1,092
    What's missing, I think, is the care over placement and balance, the attention to graphical detail that characterises even Dadaist typography. The Gollancz covers include all the tropes of modernism — sans serif type, bold colours, lack of images, use of lines and geometric shapes — but without much feel for how to use them to effect.
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