August 07, 2009
Milton Glaser designed this poster for an exhibition at the Visual Arts Gallery in late 1965, organized by then Visual Arts Gallery director Shirley Glaser. Twen, a West German magazine for “people in their twenties: from 15 to 30,” was wildly influential in design circles worldwide—with a grid system composed of twelve small modules combined in an internally regular but widely varying page layouts, and liberal full-bleed spreads photographed by Art Kane, Will McBride, Irving Penn, Richard Avedon and others (and illustrations by Heinz Edelmann). It introduced many design students to Willy Fleckhaus, the magazine’s art director and sometime editor, who became famous for his virtuosic combination of close-set typography and tightly-cropped images. The rigid geometry of this poster, though not usually associated with Glaser, was a mode he employed often for SVA exhibition posters (more can be seen here and here). Though the graphic austerity is a contrast to his earlier work, the underlying expression of concepts through tactile visual representation is, I think, unmistakable Glaser.