Social Commentary from the Graphic Designer: Workers Stories Expressed through Serigraphic Translations

By David Sinfield.

Published by The International Journal of Visual Design

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The aim of this paper is to look at the possibilities of how a graphic designer can be a social commentator and artist at work as opposed to a creator of stylistic commands given by a third party or client. However, this study places how a graphic designer undertakes the role of interviewer, social storyteller and producer, looking into the narratives of exploited workers and expressing these through the process of serigraphic printing that has been associated with the workers rights movements of the early twentieth century. This paper will explain the processes involved in producing these visual texts along with the workers transcript texts.

Keywords: Graphic Design, Narrative Inquiry, Workers Stories, Serigraphic Printing, Typography, Russian Constructivists

The International Journal of Visual Design, Volume 6, Issue 1, pp.53-68. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 3.716MB).

David Sinfield

Senior Lecturer/Programme Leader Auckland University of Technology, School of Art and Design, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand

I teach graphic design on the Graphic Design degree programme in both undergrad and post grad. I am a senior lecturer and programme leader for the bachelor in graphic design degree and I also supervise honours and master degree students. My research interests are in capturing workers narratives and portraying these as visual texts in the form of large serigraphic prints using the methodology of narrative inquiry. I am also interested in spatiotemporal environments where I have taken the audio recordings of worker’s stories and imagery and fused with typographical treatments to produce a series of short films.