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ARTH 211: Week 3 Lecture and Reading Notes

by: Evelyn Li

ARTH 211: Week 3 Lecture and Reading Notes ARTH 211

Marketplace > University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign > Art History > ARTH 211 > ARTH 211 Week 3 Lecture and Reading Notes
Evelyn Li
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About this Document

This week covers only one lecture due to Labor Day taking one of the our class periods. It also has notes on both readings for this week.
Design History Survey
Class Notes
standardization, DWB, AEG, Advertising, Behrens, Muthesius, Velde, posters, Werkbund, Deutscher, Branding, Corporate, Identity
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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Evelyn Li on Sunday September 11, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to ARTH 211 at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign taught by Weissman in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 59 views. For similar materials see Design History Survey in Art History at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.


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Date Created: 09/11/16
Week 3 Lecture 9.7.16  Themes o Responses to Industry and Mass Production (new strategies for production)  Standardization and modern design (few models and new products)  Deutscher Werkbund (DWB) and German General Electric Company (AEG) o Household products o Electricity o Corporate Identity o Simplifying forms -functionality  Changes in Advertising - Graphic Design o Simplifying forms – functionality  Ford Model-T o Taylorism/Fordism o Importance of style in the public realm  Names/Terms o Adolf Loos o Deutscher Werkbund o Hermann Muthesius o Peter Behrens o Machine (or factory) aesthetic o Lucian Bernhard o Object Poster o Scientific Management  Taylorism, Fordism o Frederick Taylor o Henry Ford o Planned obsolescence o Creative destruction  How do designers give visual form to a modern economy?  Deutscher Werkbund o Focused on standardization and modern design o Ehmcke, Deutscher Werkbund Cigar Box, 1914 o Believed in creating durable, standardized objects o Believed that it would conform consumers’ taste o Herman Muthesius (intellectual leader of DWB)  Attacked luxury goods that exploited the public’s taste for fashion and fads  He sought a new agenda for modern design that was about clarity—clarity of objects, packaging, and of typeface  Get rid of the middle man  Making, advertising, and selling your own products will produce a new modern aesthetic  Middle men distort the physiology of trade  “Standardization…will alone make possible the development of a universally valid, unfailing good taste.” ~ Muthesius o Willing to sacrifice individuality for standardization o Peter Behrens  A member of the Werkbund  Employee of the German Electric Company (AEG) as a design consultant  Behrends, Electric Tea Kettles (1908-1912) and Electric Fan (1910)  The newness of electricity created an openness for designers because that frontier had not yet been pioneered  The “first industrial designer”  Also an architect  The first person come up with the concept of a modern corporate identity/brand (a typeface, a layout, and a logo for all company materials)  Behrens logo for AEG (1912) vs. Otto Eckmann’s logo for AEG (1900)  Behrens is very simple and regular and clean  Eckmann’s is very flowery and fancy and overdone o DWB products lack ornamentation  Decoration carried the meaning of other product  In the AEG/DWB product, the logo carried the meaning  The logo guaranteed constant quality  It means that it’s less volatile to the winds of fashion because it’s so tied to its brand o DWB wanted to escape from recycling forms of the past (and the syncopated rhythm by which new styles were introduced to make last year’s fashion passé) o DWB sought to distinguish between “fashion” (which was bad) and “style” (which was good); between the “entrepreneurial spirit” (good) and the merchant spirit (bad and all about making money)  Change in Advertising (graphic design) o Straightforward advertising o Lucian Bernhard o Brands are represented by the typical rather than the unique o Object posters  Four components  Product name/brand  Product image  Flat colors  Straight-forward lettering o Edward Johnston  Designed for the London Underground Electric Railways  Hired to create a corporate identity for The London Underground  Created a typeface Week 3 Readings Loos, Adolf,“Ornament and Crime”  Modern man condemns ornament as criminal or degenerate  “The evolution of culture is synonymous with the removal of ornamentation from objects of everyday use.”  The lack of ornamentation is the “greatness of our age”  Ornamentation harms producers o They are paid too little for what they have labored over o The price of the ornamentation is far too low o “Ornament means wasted labor and therefore wasted health…and it also means wasted material and…wasted capital.”  “The form of an object should last, that is, we should find it tolerable as long as the object itself lasts.”  Ornamentation is only justified when it fulfills and brings joy to the producer who makes the object (the “ideal of the aristocrat”) Muthesius and Van de Velde, “Werkbund Theses and Antitheses”  Muthesius o Standardization is the only way to a “universally valid, unfailing good taste.”  Van de Velde o Protest the establishment of standardization o An artist is a “free spirit” that should not be bent to discipline o Standardization should only be implemented once we have found the “physiognomy of style” but this will take generations and until then we must endeavor with “creative impetus” o Thus the Werkbund should encourage individual taste o Quality is introduced to small circles and grows; profit is made in this way—not through standardized products introduced to everyone


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