Quick Book Review: “Oh So Pretty: Punk in Print 1976-1980. The Mott Collection” by Rick Poynor

Punk is my favorite genre of music, and I’ve also always liked the punk aesthetic in terms of graphic design.  The graphic art that graced the covers of albums and singles was colorful and creative.  The collages, the ransom-note lettering, stencils, logos, and the whole do-it-yourself ethos were brilliant and exciting and were an important part of the entire punk subculture.  This book showcases an amazingly extensive collection of posters, flyers, and fanzines from that era, as well as posters and graphics for political groups and causes that were associated with the bands (such as the National Front and Rock Against Racism.) Some of the concert posters were amazing.  Imagine seeing the Sex Pistols, Clash, and Siouxsie & The Banshees on the same bill (at the 100 Club on September 20, 1976) for 1 pound admission! There’s a flyer advertising the Sex Pistols Anarchy in the UK tour, with special guests The Damned, Johnny Thunders and the Heartbreakers, and The Clash, at the Electric Circus.  1.25 in advance, 1.50 day of show.  Amazing. This book is very comprehensive in its coverage of the scene in England from 1976 to 1980, and you can feel the energy of the scene just by looking at the graphics.  Graphic artists and music fans will surely find it compelling.

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