Design Hero, Alvin Lustig

Lustig Office, Beverly Hills, 1945

Lustig Office, Beverly Hills, 1945 photo by Julius Shulman

I absolutely adore the graphic work of Alvin Lustig. His layouts exhibit such appreciation of geometry and scale, and really, for me, personify the modern era in graphic design. He lived to be only 40 years old, but had left his mark on contemporary graphic design–even though he was a design generalist, and believed it important to apply good design to every area of life. Lustig was also an architect, interior and industrial designer. According to Steven Heller:

Though Lustig would consider it a small part of his overall output, no single project is more significant in this sense than his 1949 paperback cover for Lorca: 3 Tragedies. It is a masterpiece of symbolic acuity, compositional strength and typographic craft that appears to be, consciously or not, the basis for a great many contemporary book jackets and paperback covers.

Alvin Lustig Book Jacket design for 3 Tragedies by Federico Garcia Lorca

Book Jacket design for 3 Tragedies by Federico Garcia Lorca

Of my favorite quotes in this article , I am positively tickled by Alvin’s sentiment that one should not “design down,” as he called it, to achieve better sales.

Screen Actor Magazine, 1942

Screen Actor Magazine, 1942

Arts and Architecture Magazine, 1942

Arts and Architecture Magazine, 1942

Look Magazine Cover, 1944

Look Magazine Cover, 1944

I believe a Russian Constructivist influence can really be seen in these covers for Look Magazine.

Look Magazine in-house Staff Publication, 1944

Look Magazine in-house Staff Publication, 1944

Fortune Magazine, 1952

Fortune Magazine, 1952

Perspectives No. 1, 1952

Perspectives No. 1, 1952

See more of Lustig’s visionary body of work.

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One Comment

  1. Posted August 26, 2011 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

    Check out my Flickr Photostream for more great Lustig (and other) images:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/37148192@N07/sets/72157623533952024/show/

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