Today in History: The Pen

Today in History: The Pen

On June 10, 1943, Hungarian-born László Biró received the first patent for the pen. Biró was a journalist who was frustrated with the use of the fountain pen: it took too much time to refill the ink and there seemed to be no way to avoid ink smudges. Biró noticed newspaper inks seemed to dry more quickly, thus rendering the paper stain free, and so he set out to design a pen using the same type of ink. He filed a British patent in 1938 and continued to develop and improve the pen’s design together with his brother György and their friend Juan Jorge Meynin. A new patent for the improved pen was filed in 1943: it was the first real ballpoint pen as we know it today. The pen became an immediate bestseller in the United States after World War II where it was first introduced in the fall of 1945 at a New York department store. Despite its high price of $9, some 10,000 pens were sold within the first week

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Happy Mother’s Day!

Happy Mother’s Day!

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Today in History: Josef Müller-Brockmann born in 1914

Today in History: Josef Müller-Brockmann born in 1914

Josef Müller-Brockmann studied architecture, design and history of art at the Kunstgewerbeschule and the University in Zurich. At the age of 22, he opened his own studio with a focus on graphic design, exhibition design and photography. His objective design practices led to the breakthrough of the “Swiss Style” during the 1950s. In 1958, Müller-Brockmann became the founder and co-editor (until 1965) of the journal Neue Grafik (New Graphic Design), spreading the principles of Swiss Design internationally. Müller-Brockmann never allowed his designs to be influenced by trends or styles but followed his own aesthetics and ethics. His posters provided numerous institutions and companies with a convincing graphic appearance and became a model in their quality. Müller-Brockmann passed away on August 30, 1996 in Zurich.

For inquiries, email posterconnection@gmail.com.

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International Tuba Day — 11 am

International Tuba Day — 11 am

Today is International Tube Day (celebrated on the first Friday of each year). We do not play the tuba and know little about the instrument’s history (you can learn all about the tube at http://www.tubaday.com) but we did want to show this very cool poster from the early 1960s, so the headline seemed appropriate.

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Today is Zipper Day

Today is Zipper Day

From handbags and jackets to trousers and boots, it really is impossible to imagine life without zippers. They are so widespread it is easy to take them for granted. This is where Zipper Day comes along to remind us of the origin and history of this truly omnipresent invention. The exact birthday of the zipper is debated, but Zipper Day is traditionally celebrated on April 29. On that date in 1913, Swedish-American scientist and inventor Gideon Sundback received a patent for a curious contraption he called “hook-less fastener”. Although similar inventions had been around since the 1850s, his version is widely accepted as the first modern zipper. The continuous fastening line found numerous applications and grew in popularity, also thanks to the US Army who stepped in as an early adopter. Functional, fashionable, infinitely adjustable – these qualities of Sundback’s design have helped popularize the invention and practically make every day Zipper Day. (source http://www.daysoftheyear.com)

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Today is World Penguin Day

Today is World Penguin Day

World Penguin Day coincides with the annual northward migration of penguins and is celebrated each year on April 25.

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Today in History: Herbert Matter born in 1907

Today in History: Herbert Matter born in 1907

Happy Birthday, Herbert Matter ! The Swiss-born American photographer and graphic designer would have turned 119 today. Matter studied art in Geneva and Paris and worked in France as a designer and photographer for Deberny and Peignot. In 1932 he returned to Switzerland where he created a remarkable series of photomontage posters for the national tourism office in Zurich, among them his famous poster compositions for Pontresina and “automobile travel” in Switzerland (published in 4 languages, the English version having perhaps the most fitting title). In 1936, Matter settled in New York where he took photographs for Vogue and Harper’s and later worked for the Museum of Modern Art.

The poster is part of our April 29 auction. For inquiries, email posterconnection@gmail.com.

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