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Visual & Performing Arts
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Comparison Project: Designer Shigeo Fukuda and Seymour Chwast (Research Paper Sample)


Compare and contrast two designers—historical or contemporary—discuss their philosophies, historical context, and specific work—visual formal analysis.
I choose to compare Shigeo Fukuda and Seymour Chwast. And I got a starter DOC for you to begin with the project.
At least 6 sources, 4 of which must be books or articles.


Comparison Project: Designer Shigeo Fukuda and Seymour Chwast
For years, graphic design was used to elucidate specific visual messages to reach a wide audience. Given the fact that various communicating vehicles used to convey messages are limited and the time used by viewers to glean the message is scarce, artists tend to clarify the core of the message with much efficiency for viewers to absorb it fast as possible. Artists always try to resolve any lingering question in the mind of the viewers using adequate dimensions available (Stern 79). This explains why the idea of minimalism emphasizing simplicity became a famous movement in the 20th century.
Minimalism became one of the most significant design movements in the 20th to the 21st century. Minimalism is more of a principle of design than a type of design, focusing on specific elements like color and print to emphasize simplicity (Kostoula 10). There are three major influences that minimalism can be traced back to this includes the De Stijl art movement in 1930 that focused on simple elements of color and forms, the traditional Japanese design and the Van Der Rohe's post World War I architecture that used simple structural forms of artistic expression utilizing open spaces (Kostoula et al. 11). Minimalism emphasized simplicity in their designs by having what is essential.
Contemporary graphic designers, namely Shigeo Fukuda and Seymour Chwast are among the graphic designers who tried to share their message through graphic designs in a way they believed it could be understood. Shigeo Fukuda, who originated from Japan and Seymour Chwast from the US were both born in the 1930s; they are both contemporary artists and are among the top graphic designers known for their minimalist ideologies. The two designers illustrated certain characteristics of form, lights, space, materials, and techniques which they considered as the essence of their artwork (Chiou 39). Both artists used posters as their way of expressing their ideas but branched out into other areas of designs.
Both Shigeo and Seymour were influenced at an early age, hence shared various similarities, for Fukuda graphics were part of his upbringing, having been born in 1932 in Tokyo his family was involved in manufacturing (Clifford 122). Having been born into a family of toy makers, Shigeo loved to practice the art of origami when he was still young. He later developed an interest in minimalism adapting the western graphical ideologies known as the Swiss style (Clifford 127). Like Fukuda, Seymour Chwast was also born in 1931 and developed an interest in graphic design at an early age. He was mainly influenced by billboard advertisement and some of Picasso artwork (Clifford 154).
Chwast was influenced by Walt Disney's Sunday funnies and movie series that inspired him to develop his own cartoon heroes like Lucky Day. Unlike Chwast, Shigeo became an influential Japanese graphic designer because of his advocacy using a graphic design that targeted various audiences (Stern 81). His visible antiwar and environmental posters contained refined, but complex images of simplicity. Starting at an early age, he adopted the idea of minimalism combined with the western graphic ideologies commonly referred to as the Swiss graphic style (Stern 88).
The two share common ideologies, but adhered to different philosophies ,Shigeo Fukuda was influenced by optical illusions and became deeply intrigued by illusionism that made him an expert designer of illusion , in one of his great quote he stated that " "I believe that in design, 30% dignity, 20% beauty, and 50% absurdity are necessary. Rather than catering to the design sensitivity of the general public, there is an advancement in design if people are left to feel satisfied with their...

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