In the early twentieth century, small magazines and the innovative graphics used on them created the face of the avant-garde. It was a look that signaled progressive ideas and unconventionality because it dispensed with the cardinal rule of graphic design: to take an idea and make it visually clear, concise, and instantly understood. Instead, graphics produced by avant-garde artists exclusively for the avant-garde (as opposed to their advertising work) were usually difficult to decipher, ambiguous, or nonsensical. This overturning of convention, this assailing of standard graphic and typographic formats, was part of a search for intellectual freedom. The impulse toward liberation enabled avant-guardists to see with fresh eyes untried possibilities for arranging and relating words and images on paper.