Qin Yan Tian
Alexey Brodovitch was born in 1898 in Russia. He is one of the pioneers to bring modernist ideas to America, the simplified modern graphic design becomes the dominant style. He prefers photography to make magazine covers and illustrations and develops into a primal style of expressionism. He created a department of advertising in 1930 in America, also he did a lot of illustration work. And then he entered Bazaar and became art director, a revolution started in fashion and magazine design. His style was not changeless, he used works of Vogue, Dr. M.F. Agha for reference and creating an attractive style at the beginning after his style changed to be simple. Until the 1950s, his style transformed to be familiar for audiences which were the white space. His works had an illusion feeling and ethereal presence of font, that fitted with the theme of works. He was not only a designer, he also was a teacher. He did not have an obvious criterion for criticism, his students thus discovered many unique ideas.
He made photography to be graphic design, and it was different from collage. This would also be a reason for adding to our textbook, his style adds diversity of graphic design. The illustration of The Consensus of Opinion by Alexey Brodovitch in 1936. A graceful lady holds a black-laced fan and stands on the ground in black and white tone. Her forehead, fan and black skirt touch four sides of the photograph, that reveal a powerful atmosphere. “A kind of solar swirl curves through the background as if the model, who cups her left breast in her hand, has inhabited an erotic dream; the mystery of her desire only heightened by her black-laced fan that flares out like an attending wing”(“Alexey Brodovitch Artworks & Famous Paintings”). The article layout refers to the posture of the character and its structure becomes a “Z” letter. The perfect design of the magazine includes all of the details, the design of illustration and text combine together to create unity.
His artwork is beyond understanding which is difficult to conjecture the meaning of his artwork. The graphic design of his many artworks has an inspired feeling and figures do not have much emotion, that make a distance between the artwork and audiences.
Our textbook includes many great artists, different styles of artists create their individual artworks. They fill the diversity of the art world, and the textbook needs more and more variety of different styles. Alexey Brodovitch should be in our textbook because his style is hard to replicate. “Even if seldom imitated, and the artists, photographers and designers whose careers he influenced continue to shape graphic design in the image of his uncompromising ideals”(Grundberg, 1987). We can learn many things from his artworks.
“Alexey Brodovitch Artworks & Famous Paintings.” The Art Story, www.theartstory.org/artist/brodovitch-alexey/artworks/.
Grundberg, Andy. “Alexey Brodovitch.” AIGA, 4 Sept. 1987, www.aiga.org/medalist-alexeybrodovitch.