Ivan Chermayeff, legendary graphic designer, artist, illustrator and mentor to generations of designers, died over the weekend at age 85.
40 Great Moments in EGD
From the Paris Metro to wayfinding apps, EGD continues to do what it has always done: connect people to place.
A small group of pioneering designers first met and formed SEGD 40 years ago, and they can be credited with giving a name to the discipline called Environmental Graphic Design.
Remembering Expo 67
Montreal’s international exposition helped articulate an emerging discipline called environmental graphic design. And it left indelible marks on the lives of up-and-coming designers. Two of them share their memories.
Four walking tours through downtown Manhattan link 50 historic and contemporary sites with freestanding interpretive graphic panels. Colored dots set into the pavement and hand-held maps are wayfinding aids. Visitors can plan their days and preview their tours at interactive video kiosks.
An on-the-street exhibit that reveals how cities work, the Science City exhibit for New York Hall of Science and the National Science Foundation is a truly interactive piece. Visitors see the depth of water mains below through periscopes, look at the antennae through telescopes and read about infrastructure on interpretive signs. The idea is slated to be adopted by science museums throughout the United States.
New York Public Library Jill Kupin Rose Gallery
For Chermayeff & Geismar, the challenge was to create a permanent exhibition that celebrates the history, collections and public programs of one of New York's most important cultural institutions.
The Tiles of the Oceans is a monolithic wall of 54,000 classic blue and white tiles hand made in Portugal. The mural, six stories high and 240-feet-long, weaves through the interior and exterior of the Lisbon Aquarium, inviting people inside to cue up for the main exhibit. The images were first scanned on the computer and then pixilated. They are created from 64 geometric tile designs, each a percentage value of dark to light in 10 degree increments. Thirty different creatures from each of the world's oceans were selected to co-habitate this one space.
This installation was created in four months with $87,000, which included all research, design, fabrication, and installation. Both the design and the fabrication of the exhibit reflect the client's modest purpose. Although the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is not well understood in this country, millions around the world know the United States only from the bold shield emblazoned on a life-saving relief shipment tumbling from a truck.
When the original Library of Congress was burned by the British in 1812, Jefferson sold his personal library of about 6,500 individual volumes to the government to replace it. This became the seed of the huge collections at the Library today. The challenge of this project was to find a means to display this enormous number of books in a powerful and relevant way.
The challenge was to make a compelling exhibit – fifty of the best books and fifty of the best covers – appealing to AIGA members who had seen many of these exhibits in the past.
Chermayeff & Geismar chose a very simple color palette – white, black, gray, and orange – and tried to make single large design moves using as much space as possible. The books themselves do the communicating; visitors can pick up each item on display and there are plenty of well-designed captions to answer questions.
Wayfinding System for New York and New Jersey Airports. The three airports of John F. Kennedy, Newark Liberty, and LaGuardia operate separately, as do all individual terminals.