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In 1969, I was a young Marine combat veteran mustering out of the Corps and looking for something to do for the rest of my life. In 1970, I found myself in Philadelphia and, somewhat by accident, found the Philadelphia College of Art and decided to apply. Not knowing what curriculum to pursue, “out of the blue” an admissions officer suggested graphic design. There began a long career that took me and my new wife Jennifer all over the world; beginning with graduate work in Switzerland for two years, then a first job in New York working for Lance Wyman, helping to create the Washington D.C. Metro System map.
I was offered an opportunity to interview for a job at Westinghouse Corporate Design Center to be conducted in New York, in the boardroom, on the top floor of what was then the Pan Am Building. The interview would be with Paul Rand and I jumped at the chance. I got the job. We enjoyed Westinghouse and Pittsburgh for five years. From there, it was off to Texas to join 3D International in Houston as design director for the Graphics Division. Projects included environmental graphics design programs for the more than 1 million sf Chrysler Technology Center in Auburn Hills, MI and for major retail petroleum companies.
I served as the design director and project director for the 300,000 sf Singapore National Exhibition which opened in 1985. In 1987, a fellow senior vice president and I broke away from 3D/I and formed a new company, Douglas Harding Group. Our group continued to work on retail petroleum projects and environmental graphics projects. When Euro Disney popped up, it was back and forth to France for a year creating the graphic programs for the Robert A.M. Stern designed Hotel Cheyenne and the Antoine Predock designed Hotel Santa Fe. In 1992, I left DHG and formed Steve Harding Design, Inc. My work has focused almost exclusively on museum experiences — the Nolan Ryan Center, a special tribute to Watergate special prosecutor Leon Jaworski at the law firm of Fulbright and Jaworski, George W. Bush Childhood Home, Midland, TX, David Robinson Museum, San Antonio, the City of Biloxi Visitors Center, Kenedy Ranch Museum, Sarita, TX, and most recent project, the Polish Heritage Center, Panna Maria, TX which opened in December of 2021.
Also, in December Jennifer and I celebrated 50 years of marriage, roughly corresponding to a 50-year career in design, both unforgettable and rewarding adventures.
Visit Stephen Harding's website at http://www.stevehardingdesign.com