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New Work: Platform Summit 2014

Two years ago, Pentagram partner Eddie Opara and his team developed a comprehensive identity and digital offering for Platform, a non-profit organization that seeks to advance the participation of minorities (through race and gender) in the fields of technology and entrepreneurship. This programming included environmental graphics for the inaugural Platform Summit, an event held at MIT featuring talks by influential leaders in technology, business, and culture.

This past October, the second annual Platform Summit was held on the grounds of Morehouse College, the famous black men’s liberal arts college in Atlanta, Georgia. Morehouse president, John Wilson, Jr. invited the Summit to the college to help spur interest in technological entrepreneurship in Atlanta as part of a vision to position the city as a hub for technology. The event was co-hosted by Georgia Tech in partnership with #YesWeCode, an initiative to train 100,000 low-opportunity youth become world-class computer programmers.

New Work: ‘Saturday Night Live: The Book’

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“Saturday Night Live” premiered on NBC on October 11, 1975 at 11:30 pm, and quickly changed the landscape of late-night television and modern comedy. In the four decades since its debut, the show has become a cherished American institution and has helped launch the careers of many of comedy’s most influential performers and writers. Now, just in time for SNL’s 40th anniversary celebration, Pentagram’s Emily Oberman and her team have designed Saturday Night Live: The Book, the definitive visual history of the show and a loving behind-the-scenes portrait of how it all comes together every week. Written and edited by Alison Castle and published by Taschen, the massive, 500-page book features over 2,300 images, many never before seen, an exclusive interview with the show’s creator, Lorne Michaels, and an exhaustive encyclopedia of all the seasons.

The book is a dream project for Oberman, a devoted “SNL” fan who has watched the show since the beginning. The designer has collaborated with the show on various projects over the past two decades, both before and since joining Pentagram, including three iterations of its identity, several opening title sequences, commercial parodies, and most recently, the graphics for the 40th anniversary season. Oberman’s love of the show was well-matched by Castle’s own obsessive fandom, and the pair worked closely together to develop a book that would do justice to “SNL’s” immense creativity and extraordinary legacy.

“Having worked on and watched the show for so long it was a thrill and an honor to work on this book,” says Oberman.

New Work: Vsauce

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As YouTube has matured into a source of original programming with audiences to rival those of any television network, its homegrown channels and series are finding themselves in the enviable position of needing many of the elements of more traditional broadcasting, including branding.

Pentagram’s Natasha Jen and her team have collaborated with YouTube to develop a new brand identity for Vsauce, the group of wildly popular educational channels that feature videos on science, technology, gaming, and more. Establishing a cohesive look for the Vsauce platform, the identity plays off the unusual name and playful point of view with “fluid” typography and fresh, contemporary graphics.