AMMO Books and the new wave of US illustrators
One of the more surprising things about the past decade of an intensely digital culture has been the rise in popularity of traditional illustration. Granted, many modern illustrators are working with digital tools, but they have at their fingertips a vast archive of work, endlessly scanned and uploaded to provide an ever-changing source of inspiration.
AMMO Books represent the physical flipside of this renaissance. Founded by Steve Crist and Paul Norton and standing for American Modern, AMMO has built up a broad portfolio of art and photography.
In collaboration with fashion designer Todd Oldham, the publisher has also helped push the richly geometric modernism of the late Charley Harper, a Cincinatti-based illustrator who imbued his mostly naturalistic subjects with an unbeatably elegant line.
The publisher’s latest suite of titles includes hefty photo books on the making of Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing and a portrait of skater culture in 1970s California,. There’s also a series of illustration-led products from artist Patrick Hruby, whose colourful, retro-infused architectural imagery makes him a natural successor to Harper. If you’re looking for an unselfconscious infusion of bold polychromy, AMMO should have just the thing.