Now that it’s finally spring things are really starting to heat up in New York. Tonight the Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine hosts its annual Maundy Thursday evening reading of selections from the Inferno, the opening section of Dante Alighieri’s medieval masterpiece the Divine Comedy. The dramatic literary event is presented in the Cathedral crossing and features a lineup of distinguished guests. Our poster for the reading uses the identity for the Cathedral designed by Michael Bierut, most recently seen on our signage for the institution’s four-legged parishioners. The graphics employ the custom font Divine, a redrawn version of Frederic Goudy’s 1928 Blackletter.
Project Team: Michael Bierut, partner-in-charge and designer; Katie Barcelona, designer.
Jigsaw is the production company of the Academy Award-winning documentary filmmaker Alex Gibney, known for his gripping and insightful documentaries Taxi to the Dark Side, Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room, We Steal Secrets: The Story of Wikileaks, and most recently, The Armstrong Lie, about Lance Armstrong. Pentagram’s Emily Oberman and team have created a new identity for Jigsaw that uses dynamic typography to convey the director’s hard-hitting yet balanced approach.
As much as New York is a city of walkers, it’s also a city of climbers. Living in an almost completely manmade landscape of buildings, towers and subways, New Yorkers probably spend more time on stairs than the inhabitants of any other American city. Pentagram’s Michael Bierut and team have created a new graphic installation for a stairwell at the Museum of the City of New York that pays tribute to the city, its people and their many ups and downs.
The graphics are part of the signage program we’ve developed for the ongoing renovation of the museum by Ennead Architects. The new installation transforms Stairwell B, a secondary staircase at the back of the museum, into a destination on par with the historic curving stairs that are the centerpiece of the museum lobby. Conceived as an interior tower of words and pictures, nearly every inch of wall space in Stairwell B has been filled with historic quotations about and photographs of New York.
Michael Bierut’s ongoing series of posters for the Yale School of Architecture follow simple design parameters: one standard size, black and white, and all type, in literally hundreds of different fonts since the series began in 1998. Designed with Jessica Svendsen, the new poster announcing the school’s spring 2014 lectures and exhibitions features its own custom typography, rendered as a single, continuous strip of “tape” that twists and folds in on itself to form dimensional lettering. The school’s circular “Y” emblem has also been configured from a folded shape.
Project Team: Michael Bierut, partner-in-charge and designer; Jessica Svendsen, designer.
Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum celebrates the holidays this year with an animated greeting designed by Pentagram’s Paula Scher, recipient of the 2013 National Design Award for Communication Design. The fast and festive clip spells out Santa’s “Ho, ho, ho” with over 110 different H’s and O’s that appear in typefaces including Bifur, Knox, Leitura Display, Rosewood and the very timely Snowflake, and as objects including cookies, clocks, wreaths, ornaments, snow globes, and more. How many can you identify?
Project Team: Paula Scher, partner-in-charge and designer; Lingxiao Tan, designer.
Quick Link: How the Guggenheim Got Its Visual Identity
The Brooklyn Nets returned to the Barclays Center this weekend for their first home games of the 2013-2014 season. In the short year since the 18,000-seat arena opened, it has become the top-selling venue in the US (and number two in the world) and a symbol of the resurgent borough. In addition to being the home of the Nets, Barclays is now home to the NHL New York Islanders, and has hosted concerts by artists like the Rolling Stones, Jay-Z, and Paul McCartney and events like 2013 MTV Video Music Awards. The arena has been honored with the Building Brooklyn Award for Economic Development from the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, named Architizer’s Building of the Year and given the AIA New York State Award of Merit, and this week the Municipal Arts Society will recognize it as a “Neighborhood Catalyst” in their 2013 MASterworks Awards.
The distinctive design of the Barclays Center has played a major role in its appeal. The iconic architecture of the building, designed by SHoP Architects and Ellerbe Becket (now part of AECOM), has become an instant landmark at the crossroads of Atlantic and Flatbush Avenues. Pentagram’s Michael Bierut and team have designed a program of signage, wayfinding and environmental graphics for the arena that reflect its one-of-a-kind character. Working closely with the architects and the arena developer, Forest City Ratner Companies, Bierut and his designers have created graphics that are seamlessly integrated with the interior architecture and convey a tough, friendly spirit, a lot like Brooklyn itself.
To celebrate its 50th anniversary this year, the National Theatre in London invited five internationally renowned graphic designers to each create a poster that represents one of the NT’s five decades. Pentagram’s Paula Scher has designed a poster that features custom typography inspired by the NT’s original home at the Old Vic. Other participating designers include David Carson, Michael Craig-Martin, Graphic Thought Facility and Jamie Reid. Each of the 20″ x 30″ (508mm x 762mm) signed prints has been published in a limited edition of 200 and is available for purchase at “Shopping and E*ting,” a special pop-up shop at the NT’s home on the South Bank, as well as online. Scher’s design is also available as a greeting card and tote bag. The pop-up launches today and remains open through 12 January.
Project Team: Paula Scher, partner-in-charge and designer; Jeff Close, designer.