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Pentagram Named ADC Design Firm of the Year


Pentagram has been named Design Firm of the Year by the Art Directors Club, in recognition of winning the most awards of any design studio in the ADC 88th Annual Awards, announced at its gala last week.

We received a total of six awards in the competition. In addition to the ADC Design Sphere Cube awarded to Paula Scher’s ongoing work for The Public Theater, our winners included the Museum of Arts and Design identity designed by Michael Bierut, which won a Gold Cube; the 365: AIGA Year in Design 29 annual designed by Paula Scher, which won a Bronze; Angus Hyland’s design for A, the AzkoNobel magazine, another Bronze winner; and Abbott Miller’s 2wice False Start issue and Brno Echo: Ornament and Crime from Adolf Loos to Now exhibition, both of which won Merit Awards.

Update: The ADC has posted photos of last week’s 88th Annual Awards Gala.

The Public Theater Identity Honored by the Art Directors Club

Fifteen years of our work for the Public Theater in 45 seconds.

Last night at its annual gala, the Art Directors Club honored our work for the Public Theater with the ADC Design Sphere Cube, a new award that recognizes a longstanding collaboration between designer and client on a brand identity that has been consistently and energetically expressed and that has excited the public’s imagination along the way.

In 1994, Paula Scher was commissioned to create a new identity and promotional graphics system for The Public Theater, a program that would become a landmark of identity design, eventually influencing much of the graphic design created for theatrical promotion and for cultural institutions in general. Scher has worked closely with George C. Wolfe, the Public’s producer from 1993 to 2005, and with Oskar Eustis, its current artistic director, on the development of posters, ads and distinct identities for each new season and its major productions. Applications have ranged from signage to mailers, from tickets to billboards, and Scher’s Shakespeare in the Park campaigns have become a seasonal tradition in the city. The identity has evolved through two redesigns, in 2005 and 2008.

We were asked to put together a brief (less than one minute) video for the awards ceremony, and we managed to squeeze 15 years of work, in all its varied incarnations, into a mere 45 seconds. Seen are over 300 pieces, and there is more to come—this summer’s Shakespeare in the Park campaign launches in a few short weeks, and the Public Theater has just announced the renovation of its building, for which Scher will be designing the environmental graphics.

More news of additional ADC winners coming soon!

Previously: The Public Theater Identity

Paula Scher at ‘What Is Good Design Now?’

Slate has posted audio of “What Is Good Design Now?,” the panel discussion it held last night featuring Paula Scher, ceramicist Jonathan Adler and architect Ahmad Sardar-Afkhami. The discussion was moderated by Adam Gopnik of The New Yorker and presented at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York. Listen to it here.

New Work: The Museum of Modern Art


Along with the many signature artworks in its collection, The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) possesses one of the most recognizable logotypes of any cultural institution in the world. In recent years, however, the application of this identity across the museum’s broader graphics program has been indistinct. Now MoMA has recast its identity, building on its familiar logotype to create a powerful and cohesive institutional voice. The new graphic identity has been designed by Paula Scher, and further developed and applied by Julia Hoffmann, MoMA’s Creative Director for Graphics and Advertising (and a Pentagram alumna).

While the MoMA logo is iconic, it alone is not enough to continually carry the spirit of the institution. An organized and flexible system was required that would support program material across print, web and environmental applications. The new system designed by Scher and Hoffmann employs prominent use of the MoMA logo as a graphic device, dramatic cropping and juxtapositions of artwork, and a brighter color palette to create a bold, contemporary image. The identity also underscores the museum’s leadership role in the field of design.

A look at the new identity after the jump. All pictured applications designed by Julia Hoffmann and her team at MoMA.

‘CAN & DID’ at Danziger Projects


Michael Bierut and Paula Scher have projects featured in CAN & DID: Graphics, Art, and Photography from the Obama Campaign, a new exhibition that opens tonight at Danziger Projects in New York. The show surveys visual work that appeared during the 2008 presidential election. Bierut is represented by his Fifty State Strategy poster; Scher contributes the “O” banner that hung in front of Pentagram’s New York office during the presidential campaign. Also shown is work from Shepard Fairey, Jonathan Hoefler, Lance Wyman, Annie Leibovitz and the Design for Obama website, among others.

The exhibition remains on view through 28 February at Danziger Projects, 521 West 26th Street, New York.

New Work: New York Philharmonic

Today the New York Philharmonic announces its 2009–2010 season and introduces a new graphic identity designed by Paula Scher. The identity coincides with the arrival of Alan Gilbert, the Philharmonic’s next music director, and acknowledges the orchestra’s long heritage of distinguished conductors by taking as its inspiration the graphic line of the baton.

A preview of the identity after the jump.