Kevin Reagan
Introductory essay by Steven Heller
TASCHEN, Cologne, Germany, 2011, English, French, and German
Nonfiction, Graphic Design
13.4 x 11.1 inches, hardcover, 420 pages, color illustrations
ISBN: 9783836527712
Suggested Retail Price: $69.99

From the Publisher. Alex Steinweiss invented the album cover as we know it, and created a new graphic art form. In 1940, as Columbia Records’ young new art director, he pitched an idea: Why not replace the standard plain brown wrapper with an eye-catching illustration? The company took a chance, and within months its record sales increased by over 800 per cent. His covers for Columbia—combining bold typography with modern, elegant illustrations—took the industry by storm and revolutionized the way records were sold.

Over three decades, Steinweiss made thousands of original artworks for classical, jazz, and popular record covers for Columbia, Decca, London, and Everest; as well as logos, labels, advertising material, even his own typeface, the Steinweiss Scrawl. He launched the golden age of album cover design and influenced generations of designers to follow. Less well known—but included here—are his posters for the U.S. Navy; packaging and label design for liquor companies; film title sequences; as well as his fine art. Includes essays by three-time Grammy Award-winning art director/designer Kevin Reagan and graphic design historian Steven Heller; Steinweiss’s personal recollections from an epic career; and extensive ephemera from the Steinweiss archive.

On 2 book lists
Gail Anderson

A 400-plus-page book that’s a steal and essential for any graphic designer’s bookshelf (along with In the Groove and Blue Note).

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