is an independent design, editorial, and research studio led by Jarrett Fuller. Our work takes shape across a variety of media, from books and websites to podcasts and installations and we work with clients large and small, around the world.

In addition to client work, we also produce experimental work, research projects, and original content, including Scratching the Surface, a weekly design criticism podcast;, an online archive of canonical graphic design texts; and other books and speculative projects.

Jarrett Fuller reviews After the Bauhaus, Before the Internet for the Journal of Design History

Date October 13, 2022
Type Project
After the Bauhaus, Before the Internet explores the history of graphic design pedagogy

What is the goal of graphic design education? For some, it is professional training for jobs as graphic designers; for others, it is a liberal art that can give students tools to understand semiotics and visual literacy. For others still, it is a type of art practice rooted in ideas of authorship and mass communication. What a graphic design student should learn is unclear because the definitions of graphic design—as a field, as a discipline, as a practice—are unclear. The history of graphic design, in many ways, is a history of self-definition, a series of debates about what it means to be a graphic designer.

After The Bauhaus, Before The Internet: A History of Graphic Design Pedagogy, a collection of essays edited by designer and educator Geoff Kaplan and published by the MIT Press, explores these debates through the lens of the field’s institutions and publications. The essays Kaplan has assembled are rooted in a conference he convened with Tim Barringer at the Yale School of Art in New Haven, Connecticut in May 2019. This expanded volume—which includes presentations from the conference as well as additional essays, interviews, and commentary—is organized into four sections—’From Practices to Disciplines,’ ‘The Act of Reading,’ ‘Problems are Solutions,’ and ‘Designing Pedagogies,’ each broadly focusing on institutions, publications, theories, and curriculums, respectively. The sweeping history it tells will be familiar to those in graphic design, but that history is given new dimensions, shifting the focus away from major individuals, aesthetic evolution, and landmark artifacts and toward the institutions, ideological debates, and pedagogic philosophies that shaped them. As much as this book defines itself as a history of pedagogy, it can also be read as an intellectual history of the field.