Neurath grew up so wretchedly poor that he suffered from malnutrition. The experience prompted in him a life-long disapproval of monetary and credit systems.As a kid his father would take him to the history museums to pass time, this is where young Otto was first introduced to the ancient hieroglyphs that would inspire his work later on.
The Pictogram was Otto Neuraths answer and solution to many of the problems he saw with the world. He found a way to merge his philosophy on life, politics and science into one image. The Pictogram was a way to represent quantitative information, simply and efficiently.
Neurath became director of the Deutsche's Kriegwirtschaftsmuseum (German Museum of War Economy) where he communicated important war statistics and economic facts to a largely uneducated Viennese public.
In his wish to create “a commonwealth of men united in a human brotherhood,” only he was willing to shake free from language’s settled verbal structures and attempt something entirely new, or rather old. For in fact he wished to create something akin to a hieroglyphic renaissance. “Words separate,” declared Neurath, “pictures unite.
Neurath's work resonates still throughout modern visual culture today. Through Web icons, road signs and bathroom doors he set the foundation for a simplified innovative way to communicate without words.