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Willy Fleckhaus

Velbert 1925 -
Castelfranco di Sopra 1983


Willy (Wilhelm August) Fleckhaus, who was born in Velbert in 1925, was one of the most innovative and influential postwar graphic artists in the German-speaking countries. Having trained as a journalist, in 1948 Willy Fleckhaus became editor of "Fährmann" magazine published by Christophorus Verlag in Freiburg and, in 1950, editor of the trade union journal "Aufwärts", published by Bund Verlag. From 1953 Willy Fleckhaus was head designer for this youth magazine. In 1959 Willy Fleckhaus designed "Welt der Arbeit", another Bund Verlag magazine. That same year Willy Fleckhaus became a self-employed graphic designer.
Joining forces with Adolf Theobald and Stephan Wolf, Willy Fleckhaus co-founded "Twen" magazine and became its art director. At the same time Willy Fleckhaus worked as a consultant for the Cologne publishers DuMont-Schauberg and also designed book covers for several pocketbook editions published by Suhrkamp Verlag and Insel Verlag. In 1976 Willy Fleckhaus designed the Photokina catalogue and exhibition, continuing to work for Photokina until 1976. Willy Fleckhaus designed the "Frankfurter Allgemeinen Zeitung" magazine section, designed logos for "Quick" magazine and Westdeutscher Rundfunk, and designed the "Ein Herz für Kinder" children's charity campaign.
In his graphic designs, Willy Fleckhaus unites the imaginative style of American editorial design with the objective, cool structure of the Swiss school. For "Twen" magazine, which discussed currently relevant topics, Will Fleckhaus designed a thoroughly modern layout. Typical of it are a symmetrical raster, cut-in pictures and boldface typography contrasting with black-and-white surfaces. In 1974 Willy Fleckhaus became a professor at the Folkwangschule in Essen.
From 1980 until he died, Willy Fleckhaus taught typography in the communications design department at "Bergische Universität Wuppertal".

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