The Connecticut General Style Book and Some Notes on Typographic Design, 1958. Connecticut General Life Insurance Company, Bloomfield, CT. 9 x 9, pp. 52 plus with five 7” double-sided sheets and stiff printed covers. Printed black and red (additional colors in the color section) on dull-coated and vellum papers by CG’s in-house print shop with a 1/4” twin-loop, metal wire binding. Designed by Lester Beall with assistance from designer Charles Goslin.
Rare. The CG Style Book, which Beall designed in conjunction with a new, trademark (1956) and corporate identity program, is a landmark document. Printed in 500 copies (for all CG offices), it sets forth corporate visual language policies such as trademark, typeface and color identification, but is of particular interest for establishing an informal graphic design approach via loose standards and limited formal rules. For example, there is no mention of restrictions on the use of the trademark (although there are accepted illustrated examples); no discussion of wordmark lock-up or reproduction art, no layouts for printed materials or carefully constructed grids or recommended paper formats. What it lacks in specificity is precisely what makes it so unique.
With a seven-page Introduction discussing the function of the CG Style Book with Beall’s own design theories and embrace of typography including an excellent illustrative example about a ‘planar’ vision for design with description of concepts of form, texture and color — a guide to what Beall considered to be good design. Additional sections discuss the Trademark and Type including a number of ‘type specification’ pages for: Century, Clarendon and Inland Gothic; examples of Subheads and Display Sizes; followed by Color, Available Faces, Lester Beall Biography and Proofreaders’ Marks ... an interesting reference for the convenience of authors and editors.
The PDF article about this specific book: Lester Beall, A Significant American Corporate Identity Program by Greg D'Onofrio and Patricia Belen, Codex, Journal of Typography, Issue 3, UK will be emailed with the purchase of this book.
Lester Beall was as influential a figure as Paul Rand in the development of trademark design and corporate identity programs throughout the USA in the early 1950s until the mid-to-late 1960s and this book helps prove it. A rare, fine condition book with only a hint of wear to the edges. Printed in 500 copies for internal use only; never sold publicly.