New York/Tokyo: Alfred A. Knopf/Zokeisha, 1959. 1st US Edition. Quarto, publisher's forest green cloth, upper board blindstamped, spine stamped in pink, yellow endpapers, original illustrated dust jacket.
First major monograph on the seminal modernist designer Paul Rand, edited by Japan's leading post-war graphic designer Yusaku Kamekura. The two designers first met in 1954, after which Kamekura recognized something essentially Japanese in Rand's style and was inspired to create the present volume: "[Rand] combines maturity, clarity, intelligence, and wit in a manner indicative of the best in America. His simple forms and fresh colors reveal a purity possessed only by very great art; it is this purity which forms a link between his work and the essence of Japanese art tradition" (from Kamekura's introduction). By the time of the book's 1959 publication, Rand was already a major influence in the design world; he had become an established magazine and book cover designer by the early 40s, published his design bible Thoughts on Design in 1947, had a second career as an art director at the William H. Weintraub advertising agency until 1954, and was just beginning his relationship with IBM and developing his formative work with corporate graphic identities. Includes four sets of notes on Paul Rand by Kamekura, Bernard Rudofsky, Giovanni Pintori and Hans Schleger, followed by sections on Rand’s work on posters and billboards, newspaper advertisements, magazine advertisements, packaging and product design, direct mail, jacket designs, covers and illustrations and paintings, with an additional section by Kamekura on “One Day with Paul Rand,” and biographical notes. Illustrated with 150 plates, 31 in color. Text in Japanese and English. Light foxing to edges of textblock; some edgewear, shallow chipping to spine ends and small closed tear with old tape repair to verso of price-clipped dust jacket. Lacking scarce original glassine and slipcase. Overall, a better than very good copy of this scarce and important design monograph. Item #2288