Ladislav Sutnar secured two prominent positions in the late 1920s that determined his trajectory in industrial design. The first was as art director for Cooperative Work (DP), a publishing guild seeking to expand its offerings to a customer base that would eventually number some 25,000 subscribers. Sutnar designed the look of a nationwide chain of retail stores for the company, along with several monthly magazines to sell books, tableware, textiles, and other home offerings, including goods that he designed. At DP, Sutnar established the importance of standardized formats, photographic imagery, and other innovations conceived to streamline communications and popularize appreciation for industrial progress. Sutnar's position was as director of the State Graphic Arts School, where he introduced a curriculum modeled on the German Bauhaus. Among his contributions there was the founding of a photography course specifically intended to remedy the lack of designers fluent in Bauhaus-style photography and typography. In 1939 Sutnar escaped Hitler’s Czechoslovakia through work on the New York World’s Fair. He stayed in that city for the rest of his life, earning considerable respect in corporate advertising and as a pioneer in communications studies, through books, and in courses that he taught at Parsons School of Design.
Ladislav Sutnar. Vystava moderniho obchodu, Brno (Modern Commerce Exhibition, Brno), 1929. Frederick W. Renshaw Acquisition Fund.