I discovered Futurism in a book I got from a bookshop in Charing Cross Road, it looked like a bauhaus book but it was too colourful. And it was actually a book about Fortunato Depero, the Futurist poster designer, and I thought, ‘who’s this’. I was learning enough to say OK, it’s the Italian version of Modernism, its Futurism, it’s more colourful- and hasn’t someone said something about Futurism? I thought hang on, Marinetti or something so then I’d go and learn something. And I kind of felt that the Futurists would love New Order, I felt that Marinetti would fucking love ‘Everything’s Gone Green’.
Spent much of weekend typing up the transcript of K-Punk’s Peter Saville interview. All sorts of interesting things spiralling off from this, not least on the question of Saville’s relationship to Modernism- as he is an odd example of a kind of postmodern appropriation of Modernism. (he namechecks as early influences Philip Johnson’s designs for the AT&T building, which is something of a giveaway- as well as the neo-classical second half of the career of Jan Tschichold) in a kind of curatorial, almost evangelical sense- plundering functionalist austerity for 12” singles, replicating the 20s reaction to the ornamentalism of the past, except here the past is prog rock and Roxy Music rather than Victoriana- and it’s someone else’s reaction being borrowed. But it totally avoids the raised eyebrow smugness of po-mo, instead it works as an enthusiast’s perspective- ‘look at this great stuff!’
On which note, look at these fonts.