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John Heartfield Book Art – Dust Jackets: 1938 – 1939

A growing portfolio compilation of John Heartfield’s (Helmut Herzfeld) art for book covers. Many were published by Malik-Verlag, the publishing house that was a joint venture of John and his brother, Wieland Herzfelde (Wieland Herzfeld). If you would like to add a book to this portfolio, please WRITE TO THE CURATOR.

1939 Freedom Calling

1939 Freedom Calling

John Heartfield created graphic design for the radio program Freedom Calling>. Adolf Hitler hated the production. Read "Freedom Calling" by Andrea Hofmann.


From 1912 until shortly before his death in 1968, John Heartfield graphic design ( photomontage or collage ) for book covers pushed the envelope of publishing graphic design.

The German Dada artist revolutionized typography. Heartfield made the typography a visual element of the graphic design.

Heartfield book covers were among the very first to use the book dust jacket to tell a story that moved from the front cover to the back cover.

His graphic designs that grace the interior of his collaboration with the Kurt Tucholsky on Deutschland, Deutschland, über alles. Those photo montages helped make Tucholsky’s satiric book an instant classic of German literature.

It’s well documented that Malik-Verlag publishing customers often bought books simply because they wanted to own the Heartfield book jacket covers. Reading the book was an option.