This poster announcing a slide talk to be given by a guest lecturer, Hans Poelzig, an architect and professor, exemplifies what came to be known as the “new typography” of the 1920s: a strict use of sans-serif type, a single type treatment (here the exclusive use of uppercase letters), an underlying grid for the layout, and an asymmetrical composition. This revolutionary arrangement of type afforded a greater rationalism in the organization and communication of information.
As director of the new printing workshop established at the Bauhaus in 1925, Bayer had sought to overturn the typography styles prevailing in the early part of the twentieth century, in particular the overly decorative typefaces of the Art Nouveau and Gothic lettering commonly used in Germany. Building on what he had learned as a Bauhaus student under László Moholy-Nagy, Bayer promoted a new form of typography, a logical and universal means of graphic expression aimed, above all, at clarity. Bayer hoped to do what he called “a thorough alphabetical house-cleaning” in all publications issued by the Bauhaus. He and other devotees of the new style discarded the art of illustration, which they found subjective, in favor of unadorned typography, photography, and the modern technique of collage.
Publication excerpt from The Museum of Modern Art, MoMA Highlights, New York: The Museum of Modern Art, revised 2004, originally published 1999, p. 129.