BOOK JACKET SERIES | TYPE & LAYOUT
A History of Modernist Architecture
c/o Virgil Abloh
I, II, III
Virgil Abloh is what many young millennials look up to as their modern-day renaissance-man. He’s best known as the mastermind and founder of luxury streetwear brand, Off-White, the creative director behind the Kanye West’s controversial and trend-setting image.
Before his ascension to influence and power in the fashion industry, many don’t know that he earned his bachelors degree in engineering, and then went on to study architecture at the Illinois Institute of Technology. In interviews and talks given he’s talked about his background in architecture and how modernist architecture has influenced much of his work, the way he designs and constructs his work, and his overall aesthetic. In some of his campaigns he’s placed models wearing his clothing staged inside iconic landmarks and structures. Abloh is known to have blurred the lines between high-fashion and streetwear, and in turn has disrupted the fashion industry–creating a new generation of youth culture.
The objective of this project is to design a series of three book jackets written by an icon of our choosing on a topic that they aren’t well known for. Not many know that Virgil Abloh, the creative director of menswear at Louis Vuitton and founder of the streetwear label Off-White, went to college initially for architecure, and attributes his design process and inspiration for his work to many masters of Modernist Architecture. I designed three books on the rich history of Modernist Architecture as written by Virgil Abloh.
The book series is organized chronologically from 1914–1985, split into volumes I, II, and III. Each book cover features a roman numerical type form rendered as parts of a blueprint, along with the vertical orientation of the author’s name, mimicking labels on a plan. This references different parts of numerous blueprint sketches by modernist architect, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. The first version of the book jackets were all in black and off-white, however they've since been refined to have a blue yellow and red volume, reminiscent of the bauhaus, one of the most influential modernist art schools in the 20th century.
PENCIL & PAPER
ADOBE IN DESIGN
3 BOOK JACKETS
BACK AND COVER
BOOK SERIES COVERS
The final cover designs reflect some of the keywords formed during the concept development stage, specifically the words system, function, and minimalistic. The cover features a single font used for the book title, subtitle, and author name. This was meant to pull focus to the center numeral shaped floor-plan that signifies which volume in the series it is. The composition of the type around the floor-plan further create a more systematic feel to it, implying a rectangular border around the numeral, and reinforcing the feeling of a blueprint. The numerals are made up of floor-plans deconstructed from some of modernist architect Ludwig Miles Van Der Rohe's work.
BOOK FLAP DESIGNS
The second flap of the book follows the same red background that the cover and back of the jacket do. Included were some iconic photos of Virgil Abloh at work, accompanied by a simple biography blurb. For the first flap of the book, I wanted the red background to be cut by the creamy off-white shade. This was meant to symbolize a disruption, in the flow of the design, something that Virgil Abloh is known for in his industry. I thought it was a simple yet effective way to break up the different sections of the book jacket.
THANK YOU FOR VIEWING THIS PROJECT!
If you'd like to see more of my process, check out my process book for this project here.