Although most previous Unit Editions books have been monographs of particular designers, such as Herb Lubalin or Jurriaan Schrofer, Type Only follows 2010’s Supergraphics in being a study of a particular design trend or development.
The book focuses on the use of type in isolation as a growing contemporary trend, and demonstrates this through the work of around 100 designers from around the world.
In an introductory essay, Creative Review’s Mark Sinclair roots this development in historical antecedents, from Dada type experiments to Post-Modern projects.
Type Only editors Adrian Shaughnessy, Tony Brook and Claudia Klat align themselves enthusiastically with now-defunct design group 8vo, who said, ‘We believed that typography, the key building block of printed communication could be the core ingredient of a graphic solution.’
The book also looks at how the personal computer revolution of the 1990s triggered a quantum leap in typography, with many of the previous type conventions torn up. ‘Today,’ the editors say, ‘anything goes’.
Type Only is published by Unit Editions priced at £45 (or £36 on pre-order).