Today’s data-heavy, chart-loving, list-friendly media owe a great debt to Billboard, the trade bible of the music industry that is packed with rankings for the week’s Hot 100 singles, Top 200 albums, and dozens of other categories. Pentagram’s Michael Bierut and his team have redesigned Billboard and its graphic identity, including its famous charts, with a new format that helps make the magazine and its in-depth information more accessible and engaging. The new look launches with this week’s issue, on newsstands today.
New York drivers often arrive in confusion when parking their cars on city streets; the thrill of finding an empty spot is quickly replaced by the “huh?!” of trying to decipher a jumble of posted restrictions and possible fines. Pentagram’s Michael Bierut and team have worked with the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) to create a new, simplified design for parking signs that are more easily understood and may result in fewer parking tickets for New Yorkers. The redesign was introduced this week by Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan and other city officials at a press conference in Midtown, where 450 signs have already been installed.
Quick Link: Pentagram Redesigns NYC Parking Signage
According to the theory of plate techtonics, some 225 million years ago the continents of Earth were joined in a supercontinent that scientists have called “Pangaea,” or Greek for “all lands.” In the intervening eons, designers have evolved on their various landmasses, sometimes encountering one another at design conferences, in design annuals, and on design blogs.
It’s been said that the essence of design is the process of taking things apart and putting them together. The new permanent identity for the International Design Alliance (IDA) Congress created by Pentagram’s Michael Bierut and Hamish Smyth uses the visual metaphor of Pangaea to symbolize the unification of the design organizations—and designers—of the world. The system has been implemented for the identity of the 2013 IDA Congress in Istanbul, announced this week.
Last Thursday evening, Pentagram hosted an event for Do The Green Thing to mark its first five years of creativity versus climate change. Co-founded by Pentagram’s Naresh Ramchandani in 2007, Do The Green Thing is the charity that uses world-class creativity to inspire as many people as possible to live more sustainably.
Shopping and gift-giving are all about choices. Should you give her shoes or earrings? Do they want something for the house or a present that’s more personal? And how about a little something for myself?
Pentagram’s new fall campaign for Saks Fifth Avenue attempts to diagram this complex decision-making process in a series of humorous flowcharts. Designed by Michael Bierut and Katie Barcelona with Sabrina Friebis Ruiz, the graphics appear on shopping bags, print promotions and advertising for the luxury retailer. In developing the campaign, Pentagram worked once again with Saks Executive Vice President and Chief Creative Officer Terron Schaefer and his creative team led by Christopher Wieliczko and Andrew Winton.
This weekend the Yale School of Architecture presents the symposium “George Nelson—Designs for Living: American Mid-Century Design and Its Legacy Today”, about the legendary product designer and his lasting influence on contemporary design. The event coincides with the exhibition George Nelson: Architect, Writer, Designer, Teacher, opening this week at Yale.
For the symposium, Pentagram’s Michael Bierut and Laitsz Ho have created a poster that translates the form of Nelson’s iconic Ball Clock (1948) into the color palette of all Bierut’s posters for Yale—black and white—with the clock’s hands appearing in gray. Nelson’s twelve-letter name, set in Poster Bodoni Italic, fills the clock’s hours.
Pentagram has a long association with George Nelson. When Pentagram co-founder Colin Forbes first moved to New York in the late seventies to establish an office there, he shared space with Nelson, and the two discussed the possibility of Nelson joining the Pentagram partnership. The relationship was never made formal, although there are news releases that have survived from the period that refer to Nelson as a Pentagram partner. Forbes designed the jacket for Nelson’s classic 1978 book George Nelson On Design, the first project produced by Pentagram New York.
30 Reasons is an e-mail and Internet poster campaign in which 30 artists and designers contribute 30 posters in support of President Obama leading up to Election Day on November 6. Pentagram’s Michael Bierut has designed today’s poster, which takes Governor Mitt Romney’s logo and with one small correction—inserting a proofreader’s mark to transpose the O and M—uncovers something the Republican challenger has taken great pains to hide. “Never was there a presidential candidate so desperately in need of correction,” says Bierut. Former partner Woody Pirtle also designed a poster for the campaign.
Project Team: Michael Bierut, partner-in-charge and designer; Aron Fay, designer.