Friday, February 24, 2012


Saul Bass, who never went to college, described himself as "a subway scholar", as told by his daughter Jennifer, he read voraciously during his long subway trips from Brooklyn to Midtown Manhattan, "soaking up a wide array of imagery, from comic books and films to magazine covers."(1)

In one of his bookstore browsing trips, he discovered György Kepes's Language of Vision (1944),  a book of student exercises by Hungarian artist and designer who had worked in Germany with Bauhaus teacher László Moholy-Nagy. Reading the blurb on the book cover he discovered to his amazement that Kepes was teaching at the Brooklyn College. Needless to say he enrolled immediately.

These are a couple of examples of György Kepes work as a photographer, clearly showing the influence of László Moholy-Nagy.

László Moholy-Nagy

Saul greatly admired the work of the surrealists, particularly Magritte, and also the work of Man Ray, Paul Rand, whom we have discussed in class, and Cassandre, all of whom were mentioned in Kepes's book.
 Magritte's "The Son of Man"
Man Ray's "Ingre's Violin"

A short motion graphics piece using the works of Cassandre, created in After Effects as you can probably see.

(1) From Saul Bass, A Life in Film & Design, by Jennifer Bass & Pat Kirkham, Laurence King Publishing, 2011

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