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1928 Alphabet change


Whilst Turkish designer and author Sait Maden states that Turkish graphic design has its origins in the establishment of the first printing press printing Turkish books in 1727, the beginning of modern graphic design may also be situated in 1928, when Turkey saw a change in alphabet, wherein Turkish written in Arabic was replaced by Turkish written in Latin characters. The Turkish governement took advantage of the power of graphic design in order to communicate to the public its philosophy and regimen. With the introduction of the new alphabet, new logos were designed for state institutions. Posters were printed and distributed to the far corners of the country to enlighten the public about the reforms. The new alphabet helped increase the general literacy rate of the nation. It was in these years that graphic design education also commenced. An education in poster design was offered by the Fine Arts Academy. As a result a new generation of young designers emerged. One of the pioneers of Turkish graphic design, İhap Hulusi who was educated in Germany, set up a design studio and began to produce work for various state institutions as well as for the private sector. In the 1930s, an international exposition was held in Izmir. The graphic designers and artists began to provide their services for those companies that attended this exposition.

In the 1960s, Turkey opened its doors to the world market with subsequent developments in industry, business and printing. Newly founded advertising agencies employed graphic designers. In the 1980s, a liberalization wave took over economics and education. The state monopoly over higher education came to an end and private universities were opened, with graphic design as part of their faculty programs. In the early 90s, the computer age began in the world of graphic design and printing.