It's that time of the year again where we all receive those twee printers calendars which whilst useful are not stylish enough for a designers' desk. Stay cool and minimalist this year with this great desktop calendar by David Vineis of Sub88. Free to download and available in white and noir, what are you waiting for.


Merry Christmas

A great modernist Christmas message from Matt Jones and a perfect way to send out minimalist Christmas wishes to my family, friends and followers, have a great one.



Kathy Kavan a designer from London has a real penchant for modernist design and has created a plethora of posters based on simple geometric shapes with aptly named titles like circle. Despite the simplicity of the compositions they really pack a visual punch, fantastic work. Kathy's AnotherDesignBlog also has some really interesting design and content including some great iphone and desktop wallpapers to download, well worth a look.


A2 Design

Swiss graphic design agency Idealismo are an agency after my own heart; in their 'about' section is just a quote from Josef Müller Brockmann "The grid system is an aid, not a guarantee. It permits a number of possible uses and each designer can look for a solution appropriate to his personal style. But one must learn how to use the grid; it is an art that requires practice." It states a definite intent on how they approach design and clearly they have learnt from the 'Swiss style' as the excellent example above shows. The branding for home design agency A2 is simple and understated and sits perfectly alongside A2's interiors and furnishings.



Julian House is perhaps best known for his sleeve designs for Primal Scream, Stereolab and Broadcast and as a member of influential design firm Intro. As well as a graphic designer, he also a musician and the co-owner of the Ghost Box Music record label. The Ghost Box artwork has a unique take on Swiss modernism; it is interesting in that it retains a certain amount of formal structure and sameness with each edition however, it also changes and evolves over time while still somehow maintaining its essence and identity. Despite being very lo-fi in appearance the covers remain memorable, great work.


50 years of Brasilia

StudioMakgill an independent agency based in Brighton were invited to take part in a poster exhibition where 50 designers paid homage to the city of Brasilia and the legacy of its architect Oscar Niemeyer. Brasilia Prima, a design agency from Buenos Aires, organised the event for its fifth birthday which coincided with the 50th anniversary of the Brazilian city. The full set of these stunning posters can be viewed on their website and the beautiful A1 sized example above can be purchased directly from Blanka.


Ulm the journal of Ulm School of Design was published quarterly from 1958-1968 and provided a comprehensive account of the curriculum of one of the century's most influential design schools. The school which opened in 1953 was founded by luminaries of Swiss Design; Inger Aicher-Scholl, Otl Aicher and Max Bill. For more of these fantastic journals visit Display a curator of important modern, mid-century graphic design book, periodicals, advertising and ephemera or visit allovallo's flikr site that also showcases some of the covers to these classics.


Image Now

Wemakedesign were given the opportunity of creating a catalogue, invite and poster for an exhibition celebrating the Swiss design legend Josef Muller Brockmann, held at the Image Now Gallery. Some great work with creative direction from Aiden Grennelle of Image Now that perfectly pays homage to his great work.



I absolutely love this promotional poster and brand identity created by UK creative agency six for the new German creative network Dropyx. Six design beautiful work much of which is stripped right back but the message remains very strong. On their website is an invite for the Helvetica 50 exhibition organised by Blanka that takes inspiration from the original Helvetica type manuals - great work.



Between 1961 and 1968, the magazine Twen produced a series of LP recordings in collaboration with the Philips record label. This book 'Realism is the score' illustrates all 70 sleeves from this LP Series and includes an interview with jazz legend Klaus Doldinger, whose first three records appeared on Philips-Twen. The roster of artists/designers who contributed work for the cover art is quite impressive. Willy Fleckhaus who served as the art director for the Philps-Twen series used work by Karl Gerstner, Max Bill, Heinz Edelmann, Michael Engelmann and others to guide the look of the series. More of these excellent covers can be viewed at grain edit.


Otto Baumberger

Otto baumberger (1889 – 1961) was a designer, painter and illustrator. He was best known for his posters and during his career created over 230 in a variety of styles. As an employee for Zurich printers Wolfensberger AG, he acquired a sound knowledge of lithography techniques and used this in his posters to great effect. He studied in Munich, Paris and London before returning to Zurich to become assistant teacher at the Kunstgewerbeschule until 1933. His posters covered a broad gamut from painted forms to stripped back minimalist illustrations many of which were pioneering examples of the Modernist style.


Theo Ballmer

Theo Ballmer (1902-65) is best known for his posters of the 1920s and 30s and is considered one of the true heroes of modernist design. Born in Basel, Ballmer received part of his training at the Zurich Kunstgewerbeschule, where one of his teachers was Ernst Keller, the ‘father of Swiss graphic design’. By the time he became a student at the Bauhaus he was already an established designer and producing great work.



In the late 1960s Erwin Poell created these incredible covers (and others) for Naturwissenschaft und Medizin (Natural Science and Medicine) magazine. Erwin Poell a German graphic artist, trained as a lithographer and typographer. From 1951 he studied at the State Academy of Fine Arts in Stuttgart and from 1955, he worked independently. His covers conveyed complex medical and scientific theories in a very simplistic modernist way. In 1992 a book titled 'Entwürfe für den Alltag. Typografie. Grafik-Design. Art Direction' was published of his works.


Films in Black and Red

Designer Olly Moss has created a series of black and red film posters in a minimalistic style. For me these are the pick of the series as they are clever and well executed. Olly is also the man behind those stylish Video Game Classics book covers that have appeared all over the web. He clearly has a penchant for Saul Bass and clean minimal design.


Skilled Concept

Ray Sison of Skilled Concept is a renowned New York based designer and has created a number of fantastic minimalistic wine labels that are based upon the 'International Style'. He also disects his poster 'Interpretation of minimal design' on his blog, to show his creative thought process on minimalism.


Otl Aicher

Otl Aicher (May 13, 1922 – September 1, 1991), was one of the leading German graphic designers of the 20th century.

In 1953, along with Inge Scholl and Max Bill, he founded the Ulm School of Design which became one of Germany's leading educational centres for design during the 1950s and 1960s.

Aicher is best known for being the lead designer for the 1972 Munich Olympics. He created a new set of pictograms that paved the way for the ubiquitous stick figures currently used in public signs.

Homage to the Stamp

Gavin Potenza a designer and illustrator working in New York has created a series of Swiss inspired stamps and then created a fantastic letterpress print of them. Minimalistic design at its best.


Studio League

As a lover of the 'International Style' I am always on the look out for the modern equivalent, particularly if it hails from Switzerland. Design studio League based in Geneva, have some great contemporary graphic design, some of which (see above) clearly follows a solid grid and where white space is equally considered as part of the design.


Yusaku Kamekura

Yusaku Kamekura (1915-1997) is considered one of Japans finest graphic designers. His work is distinguished by its dynamic composition, visual inventiveness, colour and geometric elements. Outside of Japan, he is best-known for his posters for the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games and for Expo ’70 in Osaka. He created fantastic minimal graphics that transcended all languages and cultures.



Central St Martins design student Jamie Hearn has created a typeface from a coherent set of assembly components and then created a poster that pays homage to Jan Tschichold 'Die Neue Typographie'. Worth checking out his site for another Swiss inspired poster by Josef Müller–Brockmann. Great work.


ISO Berlin

Just like the great Swiss masters, Berlin based photographer Matthias Heiderich creates beautiful minimalist compositions with simple geometric shapes and colour. I love the way that Matthias has really captured the angles of these modernist buildings and enhanced the amazing industrial architecture. For more of his great work visit his behance site.


Mary Vieira

Mary Vieira (1927–2001) was a Brazilian sculptor. She was the first Brazilian artist to win the São Paulo Art BiennialShe was born in and brought up in Minas Gerais. Further to her sculptures, she developed a number of projects as urbanist, graphic designer, and teacher. In 1951 she moved to Switzerland where she became influenced by fellow concrete artist Max Bill. In 1957 she created this poster for Brazil airlines which followed simple Concrete principles. The blue represents sky, green the land, the circle a globe and the typography sits on an imaginary square - minimalism at its best.


Karl Gerstner

Despite this looking like a modern piece of contemporary graphic design it was designed in 1957 by Karl Gerstner for Musical Box a music store in Basel. This was the bag to hold the LPs inside and if ever there was an excuse to buy more music then this is it, a beautiful grid design. Gerstner was born in 1930, freelanced for Geigy, 1949-52, re-designed Werk in 1955 and in 1959 opened Gerstner+Kutter ad agency in Basel and published 'Die neue Graphik'. In 1964 he published 'Designing Programmes' a model for design in the early days of the computer era.


Uwe Loesch

Love these minimalist posters in the International style by Uwe Loesch. He was Born in 1943 in Dresden, and has been living in Düsseldorf since 1958, where he studied graphic design at the Peter Behrens Academy from 1964 to 1968. After finishing his studies he worked in his own studio for social and cultural institutions, publishing companies, museums and exhibitions. In 1984 several of his posters became part of the permanent exhibition of the Museum of Modern Art New York. Loesch is a member of the AGI Alliance Graphique Internationale, the TDC Type Directors Club New York and the ADC Art Directors Club of Germany.


Graphic Design Heroes

Paul Nini a Professor of Design at the Ohio University has a real penchant for Modernist Swiss Typography and has created a series of iconic t-shirts featuring designs that emulate the work by the classic 'Swiss' masters. Grab yourself a classic today.


Jacqueline S. Casey

Jacqueline Casey (1927-1992) was the foremost US practitioner of the International Style, whilst staying true to its fundamentals, she infused it with a human, flexible sensibility. She was internationally recognized for her elegant posters for the MIT. A retrospective of this work called "Posters: Jacqueline S. Casey, Thirty Years of Design at MIT" was published in 1992 and is now extremlely difficult to get hold of. Take a look at this rare tome at designers-books. Examples of her work have been acquired for permanent collection by the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Cooper-Hewitt Museum, New York, the USIA, and the Library of Congress. It was her wish that her fantastic posters would be donated to the RIT library.


Good Design, Good Business

Graphic Design and Advertising by Geigy 1940-1970’, 8 October 2010 – 8 January 2011, is now showing at Le Lieux du Design, Paris. The design studio of J. R. Geigy AG was the launching pad for one of the great periods of Swiss graphic design, in the 1950s and 1960s. The open-minded corporate culture of the chemical company in Basel combined product and company advertising in an exemplary way. For a comprehensive presentation of Geigy design, grab yourself the book Corporate Diversity a must have for anyone with an interest in Swiss graphic design.

Archivo 17

Back in 2008 NetworkOsaka developed these Swiss inspired posters for a Mexican architectural exhibition held at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Mexico. Each poster is perfectly crafted abstract forms to convey Mexican architecture. Their website is well worth a visit for more Swiss excellence, including a a limited edition silk screened print raising money for the victims of Haiti.

Odermatt + Tissi

Switzerland's best-known design consultancy is arguably Odermatt & Tissi. It is hard to ignore the impact the designers have had on the international design scene, with their clear yet dramatic use of colour and type. This is a particular favourite of mine and features in Kimberly Elam's Grid Systems book. "The thin repetitive rules at the top and the heavier white rules at the left create rhythms as the eye moves down the page and returns to the arc"... beautiful put. Insect 54 photostream shows some further examples of their fantastic work. I am interested to hear from anyone that attended their recent exhibition at the Gewerbemuseum in Winterthur?