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Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design

"before we worked together, he was a legend in my eyes. His designs, for film titles and company logos and records albums and posters, defined an era."
Martin Scorsese

Saul Bass (1920-1996) was not only considered one of the great graphic designers of the mid-20th century, but the undisputed master of film title design thanks to his collaborations with Alfred Hitchcock, Otto Preminger, Stanley Kubrick and Martin Scorsese. He created some of the most famous logos and corporate identity campaigns of the century, including AT&T, Quaker Oats, United Airlines and Minolta to name a few to his epic CV.

Bass started as a junior graphic designer, studying at the Art Students League in New York and Brooklyn College under Gyogy Kepes, an Hungarian designer who had worked with Laszlo Moholy-Nagy. Kepes introduced Bass to Moholy's Bauhaus style and to Russian Constructivism, an aesthetic that influenced Bass, who made it his own when his strong visuals extended beyond the what was then considered as graphic design, into the motion film titles.

A retrospective of his career, Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design contains more than 1,400 illustrations, many from the Bass archives and never published before, gaining a true and rare insight into the wonderful mind of an American graphic artist. Designed by Saul Bass' daughter Jennifer and written by distinguished design historian Pat Kirkham, who knew Saul Bass personally, the book is a direct representation of Bass' design ethos, clean lines and visually pleasing. It's also well written, peppered with Bass' own thoughts which lends itself to our new favourite design-coffee-table-book.

Hot off the press, Laurence King films the printing of the book.

A snippet of endearing but honest footage with Saul Bass discussing the balance of making money versus quality of work.

Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design is available in all good bookshops.

Louisa Lau
21:36 - 04/01/12