• Josef Müller-Brockmann


  • Background
    Josef Müller-Brockmann is perhaps the most well-known Swiss designers of all time and one of the key innovators of the Swiss International Style. His aesthetics in design style incorporates bold shapes, photography and dynamic typography that still influences the world of graphic designers 80 years later.

  • Early Career
    Müller-Brockmann was born in Rapperswil, Switzerland, on May 9, 1914. He began his professional career working as an apprentice for Walter Diggleman, an advertising and design consultant. He began to study various classes in architecture and graphic design at the School of Arts and Crafts in Zürich before opening his own graphic design studio in 1934.

  • Influences
    Like many other designers of his time, Müller-Brockmann was greatly influenced by the Bauhaus and Russian Constructivism, which then lead to the International Style during the 1950s. Müller-Brockmann became a leader and prominent figure of the artistic movement, by creating a universal graphic expression in employing a grid-based design exclusive of subjective feeling and dynamic photpgraphy.

“Tomorrow or in ten or twenty years’ time aesthetic tastes will have changed, but laws last and are independent of time.” - Josef Müller-Brockmann

  • Radfahrer-Achtung, 1958

  • Überholem..? Im Zweifel nie!, 1957

  • Schützt das Kind!, 1953

  • Work
    He’s considered the “father of Grids Systems” and his rules and systems for graphic design have carried on to this day.
    One of Müller-Brockmann’s most influential works was a project he completed designing posters for Tonhalle in 1950. It's in these poster designs that gave birth to the renowned International Style.

  • Additionally, he founded the magazine Neue Grafik (New Graphic Design) in 1958, which was in print until 1965, and shared the general ideas behind Swiss Style. He became the graphic design teacher at the Zürich School of Arts and Crafts and also guest-lectured at other universities before being hired by IBM as a design consultant.

  • His unique works rightfully place him as one of the most well-known and influential designers of his era, among many talented artists and designers. Many of his systems are still taught to graphic design students today, with his clean lines and incorporation of shapes.

  • Bauen in Unserer Zeit, 1958

  • Weniger Lärm, 1960

  • Musica Viva, 1959

  • Das freundliche handzeichen, 1955

  • Achte Sinfonie von Gustav Mahler, 1960

  • Der Film, 1960

  • From the Collection of the Zurich Kunsthaus, 1953

  • Zürich Town Hall Poster, 1955

  • Beethoven, 1955

“Order was always wishful thinking for me. For 60 years I have produced disorder in files, correspondence and books. In my work, however, I have always aspired to a distinct arrangement of typographic and pictorial elements, the clear identification of priorities.” - Josef Müller-Brockmann

  • Featured Designers

  • Continue your exlporation of the famous designers who help shaped the movement that made the Swiss Style so effective in graphic design that is still popular till this day.

  • Max Miedinger

  • Jan Tschichold

  • Max Bill

  • Josef Muller-Brockmann

  • Armin Hofmann

  • Emil Ruder