6 September 2012

Milton Glaser

by Patrick Baglee, New York Editor

Milton Glaser by Sam Haskins

Milton Glaser’s impact – on the professions of graphic design and illustration and the public understanding of graphic design – is inestimable. Add to that a significant contribution to design education at the School of Visual Arts and Cooper Union in New York, and you should be left in no doubt that he stands as a legend in the creative and graphic arts.

His signature designs are just the tip of what amounts to a colossal body of work, the standard of which never falls short of inspiring and is often iconic in the truest sense of the word. He graduated from Cooper Union and set up Push Pin Studios with fellow classmates in 1954. In 1974, he founded Milton Glaser, Inc. and in 1983 he teamed up with Walter Bernard to create publication design firm WMBG. The scope of work across his career is extraordinary.

Darfur poster

He has created parks, supermarket chains, 600-foot murals, restaurant identities, record covers, newspaper re-designs, rugs and well over 300 posters, many of which formed the centerpiece of exhibitions of his work at the Museum of Modern Art and the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris. His work is part of the permanent collections of both the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the V&A.

Hypnotism book cover

He is the recipient of numerous creative awards and, in 2010, he was presented a National Medal of Arts by Barack Obama. His thoughts on the profession of design, the importance of drawing, and on how one idea leads to another have been recorded in short films, at the TED talks, and in his most recent book, ‘In Search of the Miraculous:
 Or, One Thing Leads to Another’. He lives and works in New York City.