BY GUITY NOVIN – A HISTORY OF GRAPHIC DESIGN

Dada’s innovative approach to typography, photomontage, negative white space, layout, letter spacing and line spacing has played a significant role in the development of communication design. Of course, many aspects of their style, technique and aesthetics were borrowed from Futurists. In particular, Dada adopted Futurists art of typography. The Dada publications, including manifestos, magazines, and posters, reveals that graphic design was indispensable for establishing the movement’s visual identity, and its strong design signature. Given the rebellious nature of Dada, the Futurists’ typographical experiments were more conducive to the spirit of Dadaism’s subversive nature than to their own enthusiasm for depicting the energetic pace of machines. This is perhaps why Dadaism contributions became more prominent. According to Tristan Tzara in the Dadaist manifesto:

“Every page should explode, either because of its deep seriousness, or because of its vortex, vertigo, newness, timelessness, crushing humor, enthusiasm of its principles, or the way it is printed.”

This reflected exactly the founder of Futurism, Marinetti’s virulent sentiment when he wrote:

“I undertake a typographical revolution directed especially against the idiotic and nauseous conception of old-fashioned books of verses … Better still: my revolution is directed against what is called typographical harmony of the page … I intend to redouble the expressive force of words.”

Marinetti’s typographical revolution was aimed against the traditional concept of meaning, which as Richard Lanham has argued, depends on the radical act of typographical simplification, where a conventional text shows no pictures and no color. “There is a strict order of left to right then down one line; no type changes; no interaction; no revision.” Marinetti called such texts “stale” and “oppressive,” a symbol of the old guard that the Futurists were working against. Dadaists could not agree with him more, and further emphasized the roles of spontaneity, automatic writing, and chance operations. This was exactly why Marinetti experimented with proactive typography, writing poems that were simultaneously textual and visual. As Enrico Prampolini declared in his letter of 4th August 1917, to Tzara; “we, with Marinetti and my poor dear friend Bocconini and the others, have said and done what you are saying and doing now”.

The Dadaist Hans Richter confirms this assessment in his book and writes:

“The free use of typography in which the compositor moves over the page vertically, horizontally and diagonally. Jumbles his typefaces and makes liberal use of his stock of pictorial blocks — all of this can be found in Futurism years before Dada.”

達達時期的活版印刷成為達達時期的重要組成部分。 按照“無規則”的規定,達達主義者會反抗和抗議當時通常會批准的一切,並重新使用這種方式。 他們會盡可能多地使用不同的字體,以非常規的方式進行標記,喜歡隨意丟棄字母或符號。 他們也可以在同一張紙上橫向和縱向打印,無論在哪個方向都是無所謂的。 視覺衝擊成為他們海報的重要組成部分,每一頁都爆炸,因為他們想讓觀眾“大喊”。 他們以極高的層次,大量使用大寫字母,小寫字母,濃縮字體和淺半粗體字來實現這一目標。 此外,一些達達主義者寧願讓他們的文本不依賴於文本的意義。 在大多數海報中,文本的易讀性將會受到很大的影響。