F.T. Marinetti, “Manifesto of Futurism”; Aleksandr Rodchenko, “Who We Are: Manifesto of the Constructivist Group”; and El Lissitzky, “Our Book”, Graphic Design Theory: Readings From the Field by Helen Armstrong, pages 19-31.

  • What common views do these artists/designers share and where might they disagree?
  • Which elements of these texts remain relevant for the present, and which elements are problematic? 
  • Using visual examples from the Futurists and Constructivists, present the ways that political and economic power can be expressed through visual design.
  • How has the communication process changed since the early 20th Century, specifically with regard to “feedback” and “noise”?

The common views these artists/designers share would be that the era they are in shows that times are changing and technology is increasing. So that means arts/design should be new and modern. They focus on functionality and clarity. What they may disagree on is their political views, since these manifestos were inspired by their current situations and political parties.

The elements of these texts that remain relevant for the present would be the approach to design and architecture- that designs should be minimal, functional and clear. It should also have a modernistic approach, where a design is objective and uses less color. The element that would be considered problematic would be the Futurist Manifesto which includes the glorification of war and the influence of facist ideals. Not just that but the idea of burning down art museums, that’s too much, and last but not least the chauvinistic views about women and feminism.

The visual examples from Futurists that presented the ways economic power can be expressed through visual design would be that it focuses on speed, change, dynamism and machinery. While the Constructivist visual examples would include geometric shapes, sans-serifs, basic colors like black and red, nothing too crazy, and simplicity.  

The communication process has changed since the early 20th century in regards to feedback and noise so that people can clearly understand the message from the sender. How it impacts the audience. Especially if you hear it so many times that it sticks with you. In that sense, depending on how positive or negative it is, it can have an effect on the audience.