Gerald Cinamon – Collected Work Since 1958

A new show at London’s ICA will celebrate the work of typographer and book designer Gerald ‘Jerry’ Cinamon, showcasing his iconic, forward-thinking style.

Penguin Architecture and Art 1964
Penguin Architecture and Art 1964

The exhibition, which marks the release of a book of the same name, will feature Cinamon’s designs for books and book jackets, lettering, posters and writing, starting with his early work at publisher Penguin.

Architects on Architecture, Promotional Poster, Allen Lane, The Penguin Press, 1968
Architects on Architecture, Promotional Poster, Allen Lane, The Penguin Press, 1968

The pieces demonstrate the bold, simple designs that have made Cinamon’s work so recognisable. Notably influenced by Swiss design, the bright colours, sharp layouts and imaginative typographic treatments look as modern and fresh today as when they were first created.

BBC Symphony Orchestra Programme, Cover 1970
BBC Symphony Orchestra Programme, Cover 1970

Cinamon was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1930, and moved to England in 1960, where he eventually became chief designer at Penguin Books.

Tides Reach Hotel, 1962
Tides Reach Hotel, 1962

He left the company in 1985 to pursue his interests in design and typographic history, penning books on subjects such as German typographer Rudolf Koch and lecturing on matters including the work of Glaswegian designer Charles Rennie Mackintosh.

Transatlantic Review, Issue 25, 1967
Transatlantic Review, Issue 25, 1967

The book, launching to coincide with the show, was developed by Sea Design associate director Danny McNeil alongside Cinamon’s daughter, Beth.

McNeil says, ‘I’d never seen [Cinamon’s] work until Beth invited me to see his work a few months ago. I was amazed by what they showed me – and even more amazed that this body of work had not been digitally captured and shared with the design community.’

On 13 September fellow Penguin Books designer David Pearson will be speaking with Cinamon about his works as part of the ICA Culture Now lunchtime programme.

Gerald Cinamon, Collected Work Since 1958 runs from 4 September ­ 6 October at Fox Reading Room, Institute of Contemporary Arts, The Mall, London, SW1Y. For more information on Gerald Cinamon visit http://www.geraldcinamon.com/

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