DD3016 History of Design: Lecture 3 Reflections

Continue from last week’s reflection on revolution of the Magazine cover of Harper’s Bazaar during Art Nouveau period. For this week’s lecture, I am gonna share about Editoral deisgn of Harper’s Bazaar during Art Deco period.

Alexey Brodovitch is known foremost for his work on the american fashion-magazine Harper’s bazaar.His style of combining elegantly set typography with new and experimental trends in photography became widely popular in the 1940s and 50s and helped to keep the magazine at the forefront of its field in a swiftly changing world.

The typeface he preferred was Bodoni, but when needed he switched to Stencil, Typewriter or a script. He matched the typeface with the feeling or with the need for an appropiate effect. His layouts are easily recognized by his generous use of white space. Colleagues at other magazines saw his sparse designs as truly elegant, but a waste of valuable space.

Brodovitch’s signature is his obsessive cropping brought to layout, often off-center, brought them to the edge of the page, integrated them in the whole. He used his images as a frozen moment in time and often worked with succeeding pages to create a nice flow trough the entire magazine. This brought a new dynamism in fashion layouts.

Overall, I really enjoy Alexey Brodovitch’s way using white space and cropped his photographs often off-center, brought them to the edge of the page, integrated them in the whole to create new dynamism in fashion layouts and he gives me a lot of inspiration for my typography projects.


“If you know yourself, you are doomed.”
– Alexey Brodovitch







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