created by Phoebe A

4 Mar 2010

De Stijl and an international language

In 1919, Van Doesburg designed a unique typographic alphabet which helped in introducing modernist design into mass culture. The initial intention of this new design, however, was to "provide a visually appropriate form for writing about and promoting all of the artistic disciplines associated with De Stijl". This style of typography ensured the use of capital letters and strict geometric form.
Guillaume Apollinaire's "Calligrammes" were responsible for influencing this innovative style.

Van doesburg was attempting to create a "synthesis of visual art and language." So the the function of typography began to change; it could now be presented as an image.

Left: 'Il Pleut' 1916; Guillaume Apollinaire
Right: De Stijl (journal cover), 1917; Theo van Doesburg

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