The Penguin History
Sir Allen Lane (21 September 1902 – 7 July 1970), was a well known British publisher who founded Penguin Books in 1935. It was through his initiative that high quality, inexpensive fiction and non-fiction paperbacks became available to an appreciative reading public.
Penguin Books were sold through stores like Woolworths for sixpence and it wasn't long before Penguin's remarkable popularity and success demonstrated that a significant audience existed for serious books.
Edward Young who was a 21 year old office junior, designed the first Penguin book cover in 1935, when the books were launched . He also designed the first Penguin logo, The book cover which comprises three horizontal bands was clean and understated and is the distinguishing feature of Penquin Books. The upper and lower bands were colour coded to denote the series ... Orange was for General Fiction, Green for Crime Fiction, Red for Drama, DarBlue for Biography, Cerise for Travel and Adventure, Grey for World Affairs, Purple for Essays, Yellow for Miscellaneous and so on.
Following Allen Lane's death in 1970, the company was taken over by Pearson Longman and a little later, the traditional design of the book covers came to an end. Today Penguin Books is part of the worldwide Penguin Group which is owned by Pearson PLC. with its headquarters in London.
And the people who rejuvenated it
Now. it's time to meet Art Meets Matter ... an innovative UK based company founded in 2002 by Angela Lambert and Tony Davis.
Together they have designed an exciting range of products and continue to add to their inspiring collection.
Tony Davis was granted the license to create a selection of mugs featuring classic titles from the Penguin book collection.
Each mug features a popular title from the classic Penguin book series, featuring Edward Young's original book cover design of three horizontal bands, bringing life back to nearly forgotten titles as well as introducing them to many of today's generation who are oblivious of the Penguin history.
Although Penguin books reside on the shelves of practically every passionate reader's library, their appeal to the younger generation has been somewhat limitied. Hopefully, the mugs will trigger more conversation about the history and consequently, encourage the re-emergence of the books themselves.
We look forward to adding more products from Art Meets Matter to our range in due course.
Meanwhile, remember these popular Penguin titles fondly as you enjoy your coffee.