A Question of Style
Pirelli, a century and a half of art and visual communication
How can one communicate an object that at first sight is just “round and black”? Step by step, we explore 150 years of Pirelli’s visual communication, from the late nineteenth century to the present day, with catalogues, sketches, camera-ready artwork, shop-window signs, brochures and audio-visual materials. We’ll discover and examine the posters created by the first graphic designers, and the innovative creative solutions of the great masters of graphics of the 1950s and 1960s through to the most recent advertising campaigns created by major international agencies. Designers, graphic artists, illustrators, painters, photographers and directors have all helped create the inimitable “Pirelli style”.
Sections of the course
1. Relations between the company and the artists: cutting-edge communication. From the first forms of communication in the late nineteenth century and the graphic compositions of the early decades of the twentieth, all the way to the modern experiments carried out by a new generation of graphic artists in the 1930s and 1940s. Suggestions will be given during the meeting on how to organise the practical activities that the children will be able to carry out on their own.
2. The golden age of visual communication in Italy. After the Second World War, the Pirelli ‘Propaganda’ department and later the Agenzia Centro worked hard to build up partnerships between the company and artists such as Lora Lamm, Bruno Munari, Bob Noorda, Pino Tovaglia and many others, bringing the communication and image of Pirelli to the very highest levels of quality.
3. Audio-visuals in the communication of a historic multinational company. The first Carosello TV commercials and the great changes that swept through the communication industry in the 1970s paved the way for the innovative advertising strategies of the agencies of the 1990s which saw the development of video advertising.
4. The students will show their works, before final considerations and the end of the course.
Description of the practical activity
Students will be helped to think up, design and create a short animation, inspired by Pirelli’s historic advertising campaigns. Their work will advertise some of the most innovative tyres that Pirelli has launched on the market in recent years.
The course will consist of three or four encounters and may be carried out entirely online or it may include a visit to the Pirelli Foundation, to be agreed upon subject to availability.