Pentagram’s Paula Scher has created the cover design for this weekend’s edition of The New York Times Book Review, a special issue devoted to the subject of Russia. Inspired by Constructivist typography, Scher’s design suggests the breadth of the issue’s content, which ranges from contemporary Russia to its political history and its relationship with the US. The arrangement of type reads not only as RUSSIA, but also as USSR and USA. (Scher has a longstanding love for Constructivist type and helped revive its use in postmodern design; her iconic Best of Jazz poster turns 35 this year.)
Scher recently designed the cover of another special issue of the Book Review that focused on women and power.
Project Team: Paula Scher, partner-in-charge and designer; Irina Koryagina, designer.
As the building boom envelops New York City, Pentagram’s studio at 204 Fifth Avenue finds itself squeezed by construction on both sides. The latest in our series of typographic banners announces our address amid all the scaffolding. Designed by Abbott Miller, the flag features typography set in Calibre, also recently seen in Miller’s new monograph Design and Content and its accompanying exhibition.
A New York destination unlike any other, the Rainbow Room is the jewel in the crown of Rockefeller Center, the Art Deco masterpiece at the heart of midtown Manhattan. Located on the 65th floor of 30 Rock, the dining and entertainment space is in a glittering landmarked room with breathtaking 360-degree views of the New York skyline and beyond. The iconic venue reopened last week after a major renovation that reimagines the space with contemporary design. As part of the reopening, Pentagram’s Michael Gericke and his team have created an elegant new identity for the Rainbow Room that celebrates and pays tribute to its extraordinary style and spectacular vistas.
“The room, the views and the city below are grand, panoramic and timeless – so it was inevitable they are echoed in the identity,” said Gericke of the wordmark. The designers carefully considered the relationship of the Rainbow Room’s graphic program to Rockefeller Center’s iconic architecture and signature typography.
Uniquely devoted to French works in French and English, Albertine is a new bookshop and reading room opened by the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in New York. The only French-language bookstore in the city, Albertine offers the most comprehensive selection of French-language books and English translations in the United States, with over 14,000 titles from 30 French-speaking countries in genres including novels, non-fiction, art, comics and graphic novels, and children’s books.
Pentagram’s Abbott Miller has designed a distinctive new identity for Albertine inspired by French vernacular typography. Miller and his team worked closely on the project with the store’s founder, Antonin Baudry, the Cultural Counselor of the French Embassy. The shop has been envisioned as less a retail space than a reading room that invites visitors to linger, and the identity invokes the connection between books, knowledge, and Enlightenment, with references to Parisian Art Deco.
Albertine is celebrating its opening this week with a six-night festival that showcases the store as a new hub for French-American intellectual exchange and debate. Curated by cultural critic Greil Marcus, the event runs from October 14-19 and features discussions with Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner, filmmaker Olivier Assayas (Irma Vep) and author and filmmaker Marjane Satrapi (Persepolis).
Presented by the New Practices Committee of the AIA New York Chapter, New Practices New York is a biennial competition that serves as New York City’s preeminent platform to recognize and promote new and innovative architecture and design firms. Pentagram’s Natasha Jen and team have designed the competition graphics and exhibition for New Practices New York 2014, currently on view at the Center for Architecture. The show opened this month as part of the Archtober festival and remains on view through January 17, 2015.
Jen’s graphics for the competition build on the identity she previously designed for the New Practices Committee in 2011. The logo presents a convergence of three lines: two come together to form a directional arrow, while the addition of a third creates a corner or symbol of dimensional space. This year’s New Practices New York competition has been organized around the theme “Action!,” and Jen’s design for the exhibition extends the strong black line of the logo into graphics that run across the walls and floor of the gallery to activate the space.
The opening titles for the 40th anniversary season of “Saturday Night Live” introduce a new identity for the show.
NBC’s legendary sketch comedy show “Saturday Night Live” kicks off its 40th anniversary season this fall with a new identity and title sequence designed by Pentagram’s Emily Oberman and team.
From its groundbreaking roots, “Saturday Night Live” has grown into a New York institution, and like the city, endlessly reinvents itself. The new identity and opening titles marry the SNL graphics with the architecture of the city. At the same time, the sequence playfully looks back to the show’s lo-fi days, with flickering graphics inspired by analog technology.
“For this season we wanted the open to be a love letter to New York,” says Oberman. “The city is such an important part of the show we wanted to find a way to get the logo to be part of the city.”
This is the last weekend of the year to enjoy Governors Island, the jewel of a park in the middle of New York Harbor, just 800 yards off the southern shore of Lower Manhattan. Open to the public all summer, the Island is home to 172 acres of lush landscapes and picturesque paths where visitors can bike, picnic, lounge on hammocks, play sports, view art exhibitions, attend concerts and dance performances, and explore historic buildings, all in view of the skyscrapers of Manhattan. Reachable only by ferry, the Island is a serene, and somewhat surreal, escape from the bustle of the city.
Pentagram’s Michael Bierut and his team have designed signage and environmental graphics for Governors Island that enhance this unique sense of place. Inspired by the Island’s gantries—the giant skeletal superstructures that mark the docks and frame views to and from the site—the designers have created a system of transparent signage that preserves these views, even as it helps guide visitors around the Island.
Pentagram’s Abbott Miller will speak about his new book Design and Content at Type Nite, Monday, September 22, Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) in Baltimore. Miller be joined by fellow MFA in Graphic Design faculty member Ellen Lupton, type designer Tal Leming, and other special guests. The evening will showcase new typefaces under development, explore type at work on page, on screen, and in the built environment, and celebrate the release of Design and Content and Lupton’s new book, Type on Screen, both published by Princeton Architectural Press.
The live event takes place in Baltimore, but designers, students, and font-lovers around the world can join the discussion via Twitter. Use the hashtag #TypeNite to participate in the Q&A and see your book get signed. If you’re not in Baltimore, pre-order your book at the MICA Bookstore website and receive 20% off. You will have the opportunity to fill out how you would like your books inscribed and the store will mail them to you. Include your Twitter handle and MICA will tweet a photo of the author signing your book.
Type Nite is free and open to the public, Monday, September 22, from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm at MICA’s Brown Center, 1301 W. Mt. Royal Avenue in Baltimore.