Striking distance

As the seminal book History of the Poster is reprinted more than 30 years later, Kerstin Kühn discovers that the art of poster design is still alive and kicking

Simon Elliott, Creative director, Rose

‘This street poster was designed by [Manchester-based] 8VO for the ninth birthday of the local nightclub Haçienda in 1991. It is a stunning example of simplicity and its communication is very direct. Most of the graphic output of the Haçienda came from one of its founders, Peter Saville. But Tony Wilson of Factory Communications also collaborated with 8VO on a number of projects, such as Durutti Column albums and other anniversary celebrations of the club. The simple aim of this poster is [to convey the] date and age [of the birthday celebration]. The flat, screen-printed colours in fluorescent lime green and pink make it direct and extremely loud. These colours give a sense of excitement and celebration, while a lack of typographic layering provides directness and visual clarity. Its simplicity is something that is rarely seen in the UK, as most street posters are littered with sponsor logos, opening times and anything else you can cram into the remaining space. The typeface used was Futura Extra Bold, which 8VO seldom used outside of its work for the Boijmans Museum in Rotterdam. But it looks very funky within the context of this design. I would consider it a classic in poster design.’

Bryan Edmondson, Director, Sea Design

History of the Poster, written and designed by Josef and Shizuko Müller-Brockmann, is published by Phaidon on 18 June, priced £24.95.

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