Today we are looking at Czech Avant Garde – Poetism. In the period between the two world wars, artistic movements in Czechoslovakia produced outstanding examples of avant-garde book cover design, layout, and typography. Czech artists, designers, and architects adopted and developed trends from the avant-garde in other parts of Europe and created what they saw as a new approach to book cover design and typography.
Rejecting the bibliophile tradition of book design, these artists sought instead to use avant-garde aesthetics to create simply produced books that could be made available to all. This was not merely an attempt to put modern art on a book cover but rather to rethink the entire aesthetics and so produce a modern book and book cover.
Poetism dominated the discourse of the Czech avant-garde movement, especially during the earlier years of the Devetsil group. Poetism reveled in the imagination, stressed the personal vision of the individual artist, and encouraged self-expression. Like Artificialism, essentially a later form of Poetism which explored the beauty of new technologies, Poetism was a uniquely Czech innovation…
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