Many of the designers amongst you may know the name Saul Bass for his seminal work in film credits and posters from the 50s and 60s.
This in itself is worthy of the description 'design history', however it's Bass’s work in the field of branding or ‘Corporate Identity’ that I'd point to as an illustration of a designer being at the forefront of modern graphic design thinking.
Saul Bass’s studio was responsible for some of the most iconic logos of the USA and beyond.
He often took the biggest brands of America from their pioneering but traditional roots into the clean lines and minimalism of the modern era.
The fascinating thing about this is that Bass often had to explain a lot of his modern thinking to legions of ‘Old Guard’ corporate executives, in order to get them to appreciate what he was doing.
Take the full half hour to watch this example of how Saul Bass pitched the new brand marque and livery for Bell Telecom, and you’ll hear pretty much everything thera's been to say since about modern identity design and brand management.