The Graphic Design of Peter Saville


ARTWORK Substance Inlay

The austere impression of Peter Saville sleeve designs determine, for many people, their image of Factory Records. Here James Nice questions Saville on the influences, motives and restrictions that have shaped and also compromised, his work.

Any fan of bands such as Joy Division, New Order, Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark and Ultravox will also be familiar with the work of Peter Saville. Since 1978 he's become one of the best known, and probably best respected, record sleeve designers available.

JN: Why in the early days with Factory did you decide to work in the style of constructivism with bands such as Joy Division, Section 25, OMD and New Order?

PS: Well that's a rather wooly question. The first work I ever did for Factory was a poster (FAC 1) on which the Factory Sample was also based. It was certainly constructivist in style, though the sleeve for OMD's Electricity was more neo-classical. I was twenty two and in my last week's at college, and becoming aware of the great tradition of Twentieth century graphics, as well as certain schools such as the Russian constructivists, the Bauhaus and De Stijl. I was really into Jan Tschichold and Die Neue Typographie of the 1930s, which was exclusively typography and graphics and reflected the mood of the time. Thus my first studies were reflected in the sleeves of my first records. [Ler mais...]

James Nice, November 1984.
All contents Copyright © 1984 by James Nice/Glasgow University Magazine GUM