When we talk about Bunker’s mentors and the minds we have always been inspired by, Bob Noorda is among the first. He would reason and make everyone think about the concept of design as a functional project.
A naturalised Italian Dutchman, he brought modern graphics, corporate identity and visual details to Italian companies and advertising firms, and to the booming industrial world of the 1960s and 1970s. Some examples include the signs he created for the Milan and New York subways, and the logos of Touring Club, Mondadori, Feltrinelli, Agip and Coop.
«Half of Italy features sign systems designed by you: from means of transport to petrol stations, from department stores to publishing firms. You have helped shape businesses and products in the most varied sectors, so much so that you can be encountered everywhere. Does it make you think about it?»
We wanted to pay tribute to the master by curating a revised and updated edition of the only book that is still the only major testimony to his ideas. A long and passionate dialogue with the visual designer Francesco Dondina, through the story of his most important works. The first publication of 2009 was unobtainable, so we thought we would suggest a reprint to restore this legendary figure to the world of visual design.
For the new edition of Bob Noorda. Una vita nel segno della grafica, published by Lazy Dog, we preserved the integrity of the original text, added a valuable contribution by Massimo Vignelli and redesigned the iconographic layout, enriching it with new images of Noorda's projects, some of them previously unpublished.
We included more projects than in the first publication and the photos of his works are no longer in black and white, but in original colours. The book design is slim anduser-friendly, the text of the essay alternates with the images enclosed in a 16th format, in colours.
The cover design is a declaration of love for Bob Noorda. The fonts used are Futura Bold, a rationalist typeface par excellence, recurring in the graphics of the 1950s and 1960s and still widely used; and Miller, a serif font with classic shapes, a modern design and a timeless spirit. We had fun shaping the name of the master: Noorda with 21 letter ‘O’s. The idea recalls the astonished eyes of those who knew him, amazed by his incredible creativity. Hyperbole, but not so far from reality.
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