Jan Tschichold and the New Typography: Graphic Design Between the World Wars is currently on exhibit at the Bard Graduate Center, 18 W. 86th St. in Manhattan. Curated by Paul Stirton, the exhibition explores the influence of typographer and graphic designer Jan Tschichold (1902-1974), who was instrumental in defining “The New Typography,” and presents an overview of the most innovative graphic design from the 1920s to the early 1930s. Items on display include El Lissitzky’s Pro dva kvadrata (1920), László Moholy-Nagy’s Staatliches Bauhaus Weimar (1923), and (pictured here) Tschichold’s Die Frau ohne Namen (The Woman Without a Name) poster (1927), printed by Gebrüder Obpacher AG, Munich.
Photolithograph: The Museum of Modern Art, New York, Peter Stone Poster Fund, 225.1978. Digital Image: © The Museum of Modern Art/Licensed by SCALA / Art Resource, NY.
Located at 28 W. 27th St., 3rd floor, the Center for Book Arts hosts exhibitions and gallery events in addition to its usual full calendar of bookbinding and printing arts classes. During Rare Book Week and through March 30, see Politics of Place, an exhibition of artists’ books, mainly from Australia and North America—both new world territories that share parallel histories—that explores issues centered in enslavement and conflict-caused immigration. Also on exhibit: Dignidad, an art installation from the National Archive of Chile by the Chilean artist María Verónica San Martín based on secret telephone documents about Colonia Dignidad.
Doug Beube's Travel Ban. Courtesy of the Center for Books Arts.
The Grolier Club, located at 47 East 60th St., has undergone major renovation and is ready for its closeup! Stop by to see Alphabet Magic: Gudrun & Hermann Zapf and the World They Designed, a celebration of the couple’s contribution to calligraphy, type design, and bookbinding. The 170 pieces on display are drawn from the Zapf Archive at the Cary Graphic Arts Collection at Rochester Institute of Technology, headed by exhibition co-curator Steven Galbraith, and the private collection of book designer and fellow exhibition co-curator Jerry Kelly. Also on exhibit beginning March 5: A Matter of Size: Miniature Texts & Bindings, from the collection of Patricia J. Pistner, a selection of 275 tiny tomes.
Credit: Hermann Zapf alphabet. Courtesy of the Grolier Club.
At least two of the Met’s March exhibitions will appeal to collectors. One is Monumental Journey: The Daguerreotypes of Girault de Prangey, a sweeping view of the earliest surviving photographs of the Mediterranean, taken by the artist, archaeologist, and pioneer photographer Joseph-Philibert Girault de Prangey in 1842. More than one hundred photos on exhibit are supplemented by Girault’s watercolors, paintings, and lithographically illustrated publications. Also opening in the nick of time on March 5 is The Tale of Genji: A Japanese Classic Illuminated, which focuses on the artistic tradition inspired by Japan's most celebrated work of literature through paintings, calligraphy, and popular art such as ukiyo-e prints and modern manga.
Courtesy of Bibliothèque nationale de France, Paris (EG7-750).
A visit to the Morgan, at 225 Madison Ave., presents the opportunity to gaze upon several amazing exhibits. No doubt of particular interest to bibliophiles will be Tolkien: Make of Middle-earth, an exhibit of J. R. R. Tolkien’s manuscripts, drawings, maps, family photographs, and more that originated at the Bodleian Library last fall (we covered it then). Of course while you’re there, enjoy two exhibitions of drawings—Invention and Design: Early Italian Drawings at the Morgan and By Any Means: Contemporary Drawings from the Morgan—as well as a major photography exhibit from the collection of the National Gallery of Canada that showcases the work of Julia Margaret Cameron, Henri Cartier-Bresson, and Edward Steichen, among others.
J. R. R. Tolkien's The Shores of Faery, 10 May 1915. Watercolor, black ink, pencil. Tolkien Trust, MS. Tolkien Drawings 87, fol. 22r. © The Tolkien Trust 1995.
While in New York City, it would be remiss to miss Hudson Rising at the N-YHS, located at 170 Central Park West. This exhibition explores two centuries of ecological change, artistic imagination, and environmental thinking along what one writer called “the most interesting river in America” through artifacts, media, and celebrated Hudson River School paintings. Then take a turn through another New York-themed exhibit, Mort Gerberg Cartoons: A New Yorker's Perspective, featuring 100 cartoons that cover a range of topics, such as city life, old age, and politics.
Credit: William Wade's Panorama of the Hudson River from New York to Waterford, 1847. New-York Historical Society Library.
The NYPL’s Stephen A. Schwarzman Building on Fifth Ave. at 42nd Street puts LGBTQ history in the spotlight with Love & Resistance: Stonewall 50, an exhibition marking the fiftieth anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. Focusing on the 1965-1975 decade, the show features the work of Kay Tobin Lahusen and Diana Davies, two pioneering photojournalists who captured the pivotal events of this period. Alongside these photographs are posters, flyers, periodicals, and original documents from the library’s archival holdings of organizations such as the Mattachine Society of New York and the Gay Liberation Front; the papers of activists like Barbara Gittings; and ephemera from iconic New York City gay and lesbian bars.
Credit: Diana Davies, Stonewall Inn, 1969. New York Public Library, Manuscripts and Archives Division.
The NYSL’s current exhibition, Women Get the Vote: a Historic Look at the 19th Amendment, traces the history of women’s suffrage from the 1848 meeting in Seneca Falls to 1920, when women finally secured their right to vote. Books, archival materials, and objects on display include the early publication, Votes for Women Broadside; Mary Wollstonecraft's 1792 A Vindication of the Rights of Woman; and the 1882 edition of History of Woman Suffrage, edited by Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, and Matilda Joslyn Gage. Also featured are biographies of American women’s rights activist Alice Paul and the famous British suffragist Emmeline Pankhurst. Although it is a membership library, non-members are welcomed to the NYSL’s exhibits at its landmark townhouse at 53 East 79th Street.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress.