Renner, P., Typografie als kunst

Renner, P., Typografie als kunst (1922)
Renner, P., Typographie und Kunst

Paul Renner

Type designs, book designs, bindings, writer. Born Paul Friedrich August Renner 9 August 1878 in Wernigerode, Harz. 1897-8: studied at the Berlin Academy of Fine Arts. 1898-9: studied at the Karlsruhe Academy. 1899-1900: studied at the Munich Academy. 1900: worked as a painter; contributed to the satirical journal Simplicissimus. 1904: spent a year in Italy. 1906-7: studied at Debschitz Schule (a school of applied arts), Munich. 1907-17: art director of the publisher Georg Müller (of which he later wrote in Imprimatur, 1939/40); also designed for the publishers R. Piper & Co. and Delphin. 1909: he and his friend Emil Preetorius founded the Munich Schule für Illustration und Buchgewerbe. 1914-19: taught at the Munich Lehrwerkstätten (merger of Debschitz Schule and School of Illustration). 1915-17: weekday military service near Munich. 1919-24: lived, and painted, in Hödingen, near Lake Constance; occasional teaching in Munich. 1922: designed for DVA (Deutsche Verlagsanstalt). 1924-5: co-edited with Günther Hildebrandt Die Bücherstube (Munich: Buchenau & Reichert). 1925-6: taught at Frankfurt Kunstschule. 1924-7: designed the sans-serif typeface Futura, issued by the Bauer typefoundry in 1927, which captured the imagination (and use) of designers throughout the world. 1927: organised creation of the influential Munich Meisterschule für Deutschlands Buchdrucker (German School of Master Printers), which opened with Renner as its director (Oberstudiendirektor); he also managed the Graphic Workers’ School there. He soon asked Jan Tschichold and, later, Georg Trump, to teach there.

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1932-3: organised the German Book Design section at the Fifth Triennale in Milan which opened May 1933, earning Renner the Grand Diploma of Honour and, from Italy, the Officer’s Cross, but two months later he was temporarily dismissed as director of the Munich Meisterschule due to Nazi pressure against his ‘subversive’ typography (although Renner’s Recollections of 1907-33 appeared in 1943 in Gebrauchsgraphik, then the official organ of the design group of the Reichskammer der bildenden Künste). He was permanently dismissed 16 February 1934, and arrested 4 April. (Details in C. Burke, 1998, pp. 129-40.) Renner had long been a critic of the Nazis (and was never a member of the Party), particularly with the publication of his Kulturbolschewismus?, an anti-Nazi polemic published in Switzerland in 1932, and his equally forthright comments in Gebrauchsgraphik in January 1933. 1937: on international jury to judge book design at Paris World Exhibition. 1942-3: worked on typeface for use in Speer’s Berlin architectural office. November 1944: his family nearly arrested. From 1945: continued writing and painting. Died 25 April 1956 in Hödingen am Bodensee.