Second Mural Installed at Queens Metropolitan Campus


With over 1 million immigrant residents, Queens, New York is the most diverse county in the United States and possibly the most diverse place on Earth. For her second painting at the Queens Metropolitan Campus, a new public high school in Forest Hills, Paula Scher has created a mural of the area in 20 languages—from Spanish, Polish and Russian to Korean, Hebrew and Hindi—that are spoken by Queens residents.

The mural is the second of a pair that fill two solariums at the campus, which includes Queens Metropolitan High School and the Metropolitan Expeditionary Learning School. Both murals were commissioned by the NYC Department of Education and the NYC School Construction Authority Public Art for Public Schools program, in collaboration with the Department of Cultural Affairs Percent for Art program. Like the first mural, the new installation combines Scher’s twin loves of map painting and environmental design to create a vibrant, sprawling landscape of names, languages and typography.

New Work: Art Directors Club Hall of Fame Gala


Tonight the Art Directors Club will induct the 2010 class of its Hall of Fame at a gala ceremony in New York. Founded in 1971, the Hall of Fame honors innovators who have made significant contributions to art direction and visual communication. The Hall of Fame membership represents a “who’s who” of design and advertising and is meant to serve as an inspiration to the creative community.

The graphic identity for this year’s Hall of Fame gala, exhibition and “Festival of Fame” speaker series has been designed by Pentagram’s Michael Bierut, a Hall of Fame inductee in 2003, and Joe Marianek, a winner of this year’s ADC Young Guns 8. The identity, which is entirely typographic, features Carter Sans, a new typeface designed by Matthew Carter, one of this year’s Hall of Fame laureates and the recipient of a 2010 MacArthur “genius” grant. (Carter will be speaking at the ADC with fellow laureate Christoph Niemann next Tuesday, November 9.)

Preview: ‘Modern British Sculpture’


Following his work for the Royal Academy’s Anish Kapoor exhibition at the end of last year, Harry Pearce has been asked to create the identity for the academy’s forthcoming Modern British Sculpture exhibition, which opens on 22 January 2011. The exhibition is the first in 30 years to examine 20th-century British sculpture and features work from the likes of Barbara Hepworth and Damien Hirst.

New Work: Budgens and Londis Wines


In the latest release of work for Musgrave Retail Partners GB own brand ranges Harry Pearce and his team have designed the labels for Budgens and Londis wines.

The team have strived to create a unique visual language for this own brand wine range, self-confident and not aping any other brand. Each country of origin is identified with an individual style using a paired down elegant approach, and a simple colour palette.

New Work: Queens Metropolitan Campus


Over the past decade, Paula Scher has explored using superscale typography in environmental graphics for interiors and urban environments—corporate headquarters, museums, performing arts centers and schools—most recently in her graphics for the Achievement First Endeavor Middle School. At the same time, Scher has created a series of large-scale typographic map paintings and prints that examine ideas of location and ways of seeing the world. Now Scher has merged her environmental graphics and painting to create a remarkable new work: a pair of murals at the new Queens Metropolitan Campus in Forest Hills, which includes Queens Metropolitan High School and the Metropolitan Expeditionary Learning School, a middle school. The murals were completed as a commission for the Department of Cultural Affairs Percent for Art program, in partnership with the NYC School Construction Authority Public Art for Public Schools program.

The two murals are located in an atrium and commons at the Metropolitan Campus and each cover approximately 2,430 square feet. One of the murals, a view of the New York metropolitan region with a focus on Queens, was completed this week; a second, of Metropolitan Avenue, will be installed in October. In the murals, New York City sprawls across the walls in vibrant color, wrapping around walls, corners and ceiling, creating a world in a room. As in her map paintings, locations in the murals are misspelled or misidentified; Scher seems to be figuring out the geography along with the students, creating a joyous sense of recognition that mirrors the learning process.

“Everyone is looking up with a general sense of awe and wonder,” says Marci Levy-Maguire, principal of Queens Metropolitan High School, one of the schools on campus. “People feel special in the building, and the mural is a reflection of that. There is a focus on personalization. Everyone looks up at the mural and finds something personal to them.”

“These works marry my love of painting maps with my love of environmental design,” says Scher. “When the viewer enters the atrium, they have entered the painting. They are enveloped by it. Space is altered by it. For that moment in time, all perspectives are skewed. The viewer gets to inhabit Queens in a manner at once, totally familiar and bizarre. The viewer can recognize places and roads and even locate themselves within the map. They are ‘there,’ and then, again, they are not.”

This Way to Fall


The new fall season brings a new series of events to the Yale School of Architecture and a new typographic poster by Michael Bierut. The poster uses 58 different kinds of arrows to point the way to fall programming that includes lectures by architects Tod Williams and Billie Tsien, a symposium on the lighting designer Richard Kelly and exhibitions on Kelly and the architect James Stirling.

Download the poster here. Bierut has designed the Yale Architecture posters since 1998—see more here and here.

Project Team: Michael Bierut, partner-in-charge and designer; Britt Cobb, designer.

New Work: Shakespeare in the Park 2010


Last night’s opening performance was unfortunately rained out, but this year’s season of Shakespeare in the Park is set to present powerful productions of The Winter’s Tale and The Merchant of Venice, starring Al Pacino as Shylock. Paula Scher has designed the festival’s promotional campaign, currently going up on buses and in subways and train stations all over the city. Unlike recent past seasons, which featured a pair of plays staged separately in the early and late summer, this year’s plays are being presented in repertory throughout the season. Scher’s campaign focuses on the evocative language in both plays, pulling lines from each to meet in a dimensional explosion of words and typography.

This is Scher’s 16th year designing the campaign; she designed her first poster for Shakespeare in the Park in 1994.

More images from this year’s campaign after the jump.

Helping Haiti

Haiti_Poster_side_by_side_sm.jpg     Haiti-Poster-Oehler_side_by_side_sm.jpg
Posters designed by Harry Pearce, left, and Justus Oehler, right, for the Haiti Poster Project.

Harry Pearce and Justus Oehler have designed posters for The Haiti Poster Project, which are on sale now in aid of Doctors Without Borders. The overall goal is to reach a donation level of $1 million (USD). Designers around the world were approached to create limited edition posters in quantities of 25 to 100. Apart from the money donated the goal of increasing social awareness and to highlight the role design can play in conveying important messages.

Pearce describes his work as simply trying to capture the weight of the sadness. “A city as a body beneath a sheet. It’s still, silent and the plain facts say it all.” The image of the lettering beneath the sheet was photographed by Richard Foster and the printing was kindly donated by Gavin Martin.

Oehler based his design on seismographs. Just as Haiti was suddenly shaken by the tremors, the word Haiti is also disrupted. “I used my fountain pen to write the word Haiti disturbed by fierce seismographic squiggles.” The simple text beneath the disruption encourages the viewer to ‘Help Rebuild Haiti!’.

The signed posters are available for sale through The Haiti Poster Project and all proceeds will go to Doctors Without Borders.

Harry’s poster also features on the cover of DAMn magazine and Justus’ on the Fast Company website.

New Work: Achievement First Endeavor Middle School


With a little paint and some bold typography, a school designed to change the life of its students has undergone a transformation of its own. For the Achievement First Endeavor Middle School, a charter school for grades 5 through 8 in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn, Paula Scher has created a program of environmental graphics that help the school interiors become a vibrant space for learning. The project was completed in collaboration with Rogers Marvel Architects, who designed the school as a refurbishment and expansion of an existing building.

Achievement First is a network of public charter schools in Brooklyn and Connecticut. With the support of the Robin Hood Foundation, Achievement First seeks to provide students in urban areas with an education that will put them on the path to college. Endeavor Middle School has a student body of about 300 and is ranked number four in the best K to eight schools in New York City. The students at Endeavor have a reputation for taking pride in their school, and the new graphics capture this confident spirit.

New Work: ‘PLP Architecture’


Angus Hyland and his team have created an identity for the newly formed PLP Architecture.

PLP Architecture was founded in 2009 by Lee Polisano, David Leventhal, Fred Pilbrow, Karen Cook and Ron Bakker, the five former partners of Kohn Pedersen Fox’s (KPF) London office. The new practice operates from offices in Camden with a team of over 70. They are currently working on a number of projects in the U.K. and abroad, including a mixed-use tower in the City of London for Heron International, the over-site development at Bond Street Station for Grosvenor, a hotel in Abu Dhabi for Mubadala and a large-scale urban planning project for the Qatar Foundation.

The identity utilises a re-drawn version of the typeface DIN. The font has been customised into a stencil version evocative of architectural hand-drawn lettering. The slash between PLP and Architecture is positioned at the same angle as the slope of the ‘A’. A range of stationery is laid out using a linear hang-line system and clean typography and the background for literature uses a pattern based upon the diagonal slash.

Examples of the application of the identity after the jump.