The Influence of Swiss Style and New Wave Design

August 11, 2021

The deaths of seminal graphic design figures Armin Hofmann and Wolfgang Weingart in 2020–2021, respectively, also symbolizes a transition of the glory days of Swiss Style (Swiss Internationalism) and New Wave design.

Swiss style, within the constructs of modernism, influenced by Structuralism, Bauhaus, De Stijl and New Typography, as a result of the efforts of designers such as Josef Muller-Brockmann, Armin Hofmann, Emil Ruder, matured and disseminated through The Basel school of design education system. Swiss style has become the cradle of the new wave, and its influence can be seen all over the world. For many, it has become the fixed definition of graphic design, forming the basis of design education.

In this lecture, Joe Chang, founder of Eyeson Type, shares the century-old development of Swiss graphic design, the educational exchange activities centered on Basel since the 1980s, as well as the Lausanne School of Design (ECAL), the Geneva School of Design and Art (HEAD–Genève), and others. He will explore how these school's activities not only export the influence of Swiss design, but also bring diverse new possibilities to Swiss graphic design, and cultivate talents such as Nguyen Gobber, Josh Schaub, Automatico, which inherit rigorous details and precision, but are different from an established, dynamic Swiss design.

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