18 facts about Otto Eckmann

By Gwylym Owen

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Otto Eckmann (19 November 1865 – 11 June 1902) was a German painter and graphic artist. He was a prominent member of the “floral” branch of Jugendstil. He created the Eckmann typeface, which was based upon Japanese calligraphy.

Otto Eckmann was born in Hamburg, Germany in 1865. He studied at the Kunstgewerbeschule in Hamburg and Nuremberg and at university in Munich. In 1894, Eckmann gave happening painting (and auctioned off his works) in order to concentrate on applied design. He began producing graphic exploit for the magazines Pan in 1895 and Jugend in 1896. He also designed book covers for the publishers Cotta, Diederichs, Scherl and Seemann, as without difficulty as the logo for the publishing home S. Fischer Verlag.

In 1897 he taught ornamental painting at the Unterrichtsanstalt des Königlichen Kunstgewerbemuseums in Berlin. In 1899, he meant the logo for the magazine Die Woche. From 1900 to 1902, Eckmann did graphic play a role for the Allgemeine Elektrizitätsgesellschaft (AEG). During this time, he designed the fonts Eckmann (in 1900) and Fette Eckmann (in 1902), probably the most common Jugendstil fonts nevertheless in use today.

Eckmann died of the tuberculosis that had plagued him for years on 11 June 1902, at age 37 in Badenweiler, Germany.

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