Stanley Morison  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Stanley Morison (6 May 1889 – 11 October 1967) was an English typographer, designer and historian of printing.

Born in Wanstead, Essex, Morison spent most of his childhood and early adult years (1896 - 1912) at the family home in Fairfax Road, Harringay. He was self-taught, having left school after his father abandoned his family, Morison became an editorial assistant on Imprint magazine in 1913. As a conscientious objector he was imprisoned during the First World War, but became design supervisor at the Pelican Press in 1918. This was followed by a similar position at the Cloister Press.

In 1922 he was a founder-member of the Fleuron Society dedicated to typographical matters (a fleuron being a typographic flower or ornament). He edited the society's journal The Fleuron from 1925 to 1930. The quality of the publication's artwork and printing was considered exceptional. From 1923 to 1925 he was a staff editor/writer for the Penrose Annual, a graphics arts journal.

From 1923 to 1967 Morison was typographic consultant for the Monotype Corporation. In the 1920s and 1930s, his work at Monotype included research and adaptation of historic typefaces, including the revival of the Baskerville and Bembo types. He pioneered the great expansion of the company's range of typefaces and hugely influenced the field of typography to the present day.

Morison was also typographical consultant to The Times newspaper from 1929 to 1960 and in 1931, after having publicly criticised the paper for the poor quality of its printing, he was commissioned by the newspaper to produce a new easy-to-read typeface for the publication. Times New Roman, the typeface Morison developed with graphic artist Victor Lardent, was first used by the newspaper in 1932 and was issued commercially by Monotype in 1933.

Morison edited the History of the Times from 1935 to 1952 and was editor of the Times Literary Supplement between 1945 and 1948. He was elected a Royal Designer for Industry in 1960 and was a member of the editorial board of Encyclopædia Britannica from 1961 until his death in 1967 in London.

Other typefaces designed by Morison for the Monotype Corporation include Blado (1923) and Bembo (1929).

Selected publications

  • Four centuries of Fine Printing; Two Hundred and Seventy-two Examples of the Work of Presses Established Between 1465 and 1924, 1924
  • Type Designs of the Past and Present, 1926
  • The Typographic Book, 1450-1935: A Study of Fine Typography Through Five Centuries, 1963
  • Calligraphy 1535-1885: A collection of seventy-two writing-books and specimens from the Italian, French, Low Countries and Spanish schools, 1962
  • First Principles of Typography, 1936
  • Letterforms , 1968
  • A Tally of Types, 1953
  • On Type Designs Past and Present: A Brief Introduction, 1962
  • Politics and Script, 1972

See also

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Stanley Morison" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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