History of Design

Academic year
Subject Area
Audio-visuals and Media Production
Language of Instruction
Mode of Delivery
ECTS Credits
1st Cycle Studies

Recommended Prerequisites

No recommended prerequesites.

Teaching Methods

Theorectical classes. Practical classes based on a development of a bibliographical survey.

Learning Outcomes

The course is an introduction to the discipline of graphic design through the study of its history. Students should be able to identify the great periods of design history and the influences that ideas, processes, and technologies have on contemporary design.

Work Placement(s)




What is graphic design?

What designers do.

Nature and origins of graphic design. The design before the design.  Origins. The invention of writing.

Evolution of the forms of information struture.

Europe, typography and movable types.

Design and the artistic movements of the XIX century. Going to the XX century.

Industrial Revolution and the impact of technology in visual comunication.

The Arts&Crafts movement.

Art Nouveau.

Schools of design in the XX century. Modern art, modern design.

The influence of modern art: Cubism, Futurism, Arte Deco.

Revolutions in design: De Stijl, Suprematism, Construtivism.

 Bauhaus and the New Typography.

 Modern movement in America.

Internacional style.

The Suisse style.

 The New York School.

Corporate identity in Germany and in the USA.

The return of expression. Postmodernism.

Digital revolution.

Design in contemporary society.

Head Lecturer(s)

João Manuel Frade Belo Bicker

Assessment Methods

Project: 50.0%
Exam: 50.0%


Drucker, Johanna e McVarish, Emily. 2009. Graphic Design History: A critical guide Boston: Pearson ISBN: 978-0-205-21946-9

 Eskilson, Stephen J. 2007. Graphic Design: A New History London: Lawrence King Publishing ISBN: 9781856695114

Heller, Steven. 1997. Design literacy: Understanding Graphic Design New York: Allworth Press ISBN: 1-88055-976-5

Hollis, Richard. 2002. Graphic Design: A Concise History, Second Edition London, Thames & Hudson ISBN: 978-0500203477

Lupton, Ellen e Miller, J. Abbott. 1999. Design Writing Research: writing on grapfic design London: Phaidon Press Limited. ISBN: 0-7148-3851-9

Meggs, Philip e Purvis, Alston W., 2006. Megg´s History of Graphic Design (4ª edição) New York: John Wiley & Sons ISBN: 0471699020

Newark, Quentin. 2002. What is Graphic Design Mies: RotoVision ISBN: 2-88046-539-7

Resnick, Elizabeth. 2003. Design for Communication: Conceptual Graphic Design Basics New York: John Wiley & Sons ISBN: 0-471-41829-3.