Australian graphic design archive Re:collection relaunches

Published:  June 14, 2013
Heath Killen
Australian graphic design archive Re:collection relaunches

Featuring a new design and expanded content (including essays and detailed biographies), the online inventory of Australian graphic design Re:collection has just been relaunched.

Founded in 2009 by Dominic Hofstede, the site focuses primarily on the period between 1960–1980. Hofstede says that his curatioral approach was never “never intended to be comprehensive, representative or exhaustive” and instead he takes a purely subjective approach – showcasing the work of designers that he personally finds inspiring, intriguing or influential. Some of the notable designers featured on the site include Les Mason, Lyndon Whaite, David Lancashire, Ken Cato, Arthur Leydin, Brian Sadgrove, Bruce Weatherhead and Harry Williamson.

Hofstede began the project in response to the absence of Australian graphic design reference material available, particularly from the time period that Re:collection examines. With so much of Australia’s graphic design history is either missing, destroyed, or simply unexamined – Re:collection plays an important role in showcasing and critically engaging with our cultural heritage.

According to Hofstede “there is a paucity of books on the subject, a quandary noted by esteemed design commentator Rick Poynor in his excellent article ‘Look inward: graphic design in Australia’ (Eye Magazine 46, 2001). Poynor attributes the deficiency to ‘a tendency for Australian design to underplay itself,’ a modesty that would be understandable if there was, in fact, nothing worthy of acknowledgment. It is my hope and aim that visitors to this site will appreciate that this is not the case.”

Folklore of the Australian Railwaymen — Andy Schmid (1971)

Angry OZ — Martin Sharp (1971)

Collier & Company Identity Launch — Cato Hibberd (c. 1970s)

Directory of Philanthropic Trusts — Alison Forbes (1972)

Melbourne Artists Supplies Business Card — Bruce Weatherhead (c. 1980s)

The new Re:collection website was made possible with the assistance of Measured Labs, the new studio founded by former Hofstede designer Ben Jennings and David Hauser. In addition to Hofstede, contributors to the website include Stephen Banham, Mimmo Cozzolino, and Max Robison.

Visit the archives here, and keep up to date with Re:collection on Twitter.

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One Response

  1. looks great! i would love to know more about Gordon Andrews who designed our currency! i have a great book about him, and he did some lovely work…looks like maybe i should donate it to your collection in my will! :)

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