Congratulations, Lisa!


Past and present members of Lisa Strausfeld’s Pentagram design team reunited last night to celebrate Lisa’s win for Interaction Design at the 2010 National Design Awards Gala at Cipriani 42nd Street in New York. Between spins on the dance floor, the team reminisced about favorite projects, crazy deadlines and legendary karaoke sessions. Thanks to the team for all the great work!

Litl Wins Big in the 2010 IDEA Awards


Our collaboration with Litl on the graphic design and user interface for its Litl webbook has received two honors in the 2010 International Design Excellence Awards. The awards are presented by the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) and sponsored by Fast Company, Dow Corning and The Henry Ford.

The Litl webbook packaging, designed by Litl with Abbott Miller, received a Gold in the Packaging & Graphics category, while the Litl OS won a Bronze in the Interactive Product Experiences category. Lisa Strausfeld and her team worked with Litl and Cooper on the design of the graphical user interface for the webbook OS.

Miller designed the brand identity for Litl. The webbook packaging is simple, straightforward and designed to appeal to a wide range of ages, embodying Litl’s mission as technology for everyone. The entire package is made from recyclable paper with no plastics or foams used, and the packaging doubles as its own shipping box.

“The Litl webbook is for families who aren’t necessarily tech savvy, and the wit and charm of the brand language translated in how the packaging was presented and unfolded,” commented IDEA juror Fumi Watanabe, creative director of merchandising at Starbucks. “The smart use of corrugated box structure, which made the packaging look thoughtful and giftable, also functioned to protect the product. Attention to details and emotional connection granted this packaging the design excellence.”

The Litl webbook itself, designed by Litl with Fuseproject, won a Bronze in the Computer Equipment category.

Design for a Living World, the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum exhibition designed and co-curated by Abbott Miller, was a Finalist in the Environments category.

New Work: Ennead Architects


Design firms with a namesake partner or design leader inevitably face a challenge when leadership passes to a new generation: how to establish an identity that distinguishes the firm from its former leader, maintains its legacy, and reflects the vitality of its current partnership? Today Polshek Partnership Architects announces the change of its name to Ennead Architects. The name, pronounced EN-ee-ad, is inspired by the Greek word for a group of nine, here the number of the firm’s current partnership: Joseph Fleischer, Timothy Hartung, Duncan Hazard, Kevin McClurkan, Richard Olcott, Susan Rodriguez, Tomas Rossant, Todd Schliemann and Don Weinreich.

Michael Bierut and Lisa Strausfeld have designed a new identity and website for Ennead that reflects the firm’s shared history and thriving collaboration. The branding strategy was developed in collaboration with LaPlaca Cohen.

Lisa Strausfeld Wins National Design Award

Lisa Strausfeld’s dynamic media wall for Bloomberg L.P. corporate headquarters in New York.

We are thrilled to announce that Lisa Strausfeld has been selected to receive the 2010 National Design Award for Interaction Design. The National Design Awards celebrate outstanding achievement in design and are sponsored by Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum. First Lady Michelle Obama serves as the Honorary Patron for this year’s awards, and the recipients will be honored at a gala on October 14 in New York.

Strausfeld was a Finalist in the Interaction Design category last year, the first year the discipline was honored by the awards. She specializes in information visualization, and her work ranges from software prototypes, user interfaces and websites to interpretive displays and large-scale media installations. Recent work includes user interfaces for One Laptop per Child and Litl; data visualizations for GE and The New York Times; websites for the Cleveland Museum of Art, Gallup, and Diller Scofidio + Renfro; and installations for the Museum of Arts and Design, the Detroit Institute of Arts and the corporate headquarters of Bloomberg L.P. She holds four patents relating to user interfaces and intelligent information search and retrieval.

Strausfeld has won five awards from the prestigious International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA), and Fast Company magazine selected her as one of its 2009 Masters of Design. Her work is in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art.

Congratulations, Lisa!

New Work: GE


How healthy are our hospitals? Working with GE, Lisa Strausfeld and her team have designed a new interactive data visualization that tracks the quality of patient care in over 3,000 hospitals across the United States. The visualization presents 30 basic measures of care in five categories of common conditions for which patients enter the hospital: surgery, pneumonia, heart attack, heart failure and children’s asthma. The project is based on data from The Joint Commission, an independent, non-profit organization that accredits and certifies more than 17,000 health care organizations and programs in the US. 

The visualization is being introduced via GE’s Healthymagination initiative and was launched at a GE Healthcare summit in New York last week. The visualization is the second in an ongoing collaboration between Strausfeld and GE, following the home appliance energy use calculator that launched last month.

New Work: Cleveland Museum of Art


With top-notch collections in Asian art, Greek and Roman art, and European painting and sculpture, including significant works by Picasso, El Greco, Caravaggio and Pousin, among many others, the Cleveland Museum of Art is one of the world’s great art museums. It is also a vital part of its local community, a beloved institution that plays an integral role in the cultural life of Cleveland and its residents. The museum is committed to making its collections accessible to all—unlike most museums today, it has a policy of free admission to the public, a mandate established in its founding charter—and presents smart programming that consistently challenges and engages visitors.

From 2005 to 2009 the CMA undertook an extensive expansion that included a complete renovation of its 1916 Beaux Arts building and 1971 addition by Marcel Breuer, and the construction of a new East Wing designed by Rafael Vinoly, which opened last summer. The expansion has increased the size of the museum by 41 percent, allowing more of its collection to be put on view.

Now the museum has launched a new website that provides enhanced access to its collection. Designed by Lisa Strausfeld and Takaaki Okada, in collaboration with Michael Bierut (who took art classes at the museum as a child), the site is focused on serving the needs of the museum’s two primary audiences: the local member who visits regularly to view art and experience museum events, and the global art enthusiast who comes for the museum’s astounding collection. Users can create their own profiles, customize their experience of the museum, and share favorite works and museum events. The site creates an experience that is immediately engaging and, in the words of the museum, “visually addictive,” placing the museum’s objects front and center.

New Work: GE


We all know that it’s best to turn off the lights or TV when one leaves a room. But what does this energy use actually mean in terms of dollars saved, or sitcoms unwatched? For GE, Lisa Strausfeld and her team have designed a new visualization that calculates energy use of home appliances in terms that are easily understood. The calculator tracks the energy consumption of 53 electrically-powered devices found in homes, from large appliances like a furnace, refrigerator and air conditioner; to electronics like a laptop, DVR and TV; to personal care items like a curling iron, hair dryer; to kitchen appliances like a blender, microwave and popcorn popper. The visualization allows users to see the energy consumption for each appliance in terms of watts used and the equivalent cost in dollars. It also allows users to convert the energy to equivalent consumption in gallons of gasoline—a familiar unit of energy cost for consumers—and “appliance specific” units like loads of laundry and batches of cupcakes.

Timed to the 40th anniversary of Earth Day, the calculator is the first visualization completed in a new collaboration between Pentagram and GE. Led by Camille Kubie, GE is driving an ambitious initiative to transform data about energy and health related issues into meaningful information for consumers. GE has been collaborating on visualizations with GOOD, Ben Fry, and information designer David McCandless. The visualizations are being introduced via GE’s Healthymagination and Ecomagination websites, where the energy use calculator was launched last week.