Library Completes IMLS Grant to Incorporate Design into Archival Practice

IMLS_Future_Pasts_2019-1The College Archives, in partnership with the Interaction Design Department, has completed an Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) National Leadership Grant for Libraries project to identify best practices for collaborations between archivists and designers. The initiative, dubbed Future Pasts, included as its centerpiece a core 14-week design studio class in which librarians, archivists, design students and faculty worked together in devising prototypes of digital tools and interfaces to enhance access to the collections in the ArtCenter Archives. The project incorporated design methodologies to address ways to meet users’ needs while creating a quality user experience. The results are documented in a publication, Future Pasts: Reimagining the User Experience in Archives, which also serves as a set of guidelines for other institutions embarking on their own projects.

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UPDATE: More Recognition for ArtCenter’s 2019-20 Viewbook

Image courtesy Brad Bartlett

Image courtesy Brad Bartlett

Update

The Viewbook was awarded a Gold Circle of Excellence Award from CASE (Council for Advancement and Support of Education) in the Publications | Student Recruitment Viewbooks & Prospectuses category.

From the Judges
ArtCenter College of Design embraced its history and reputation by putting work inspired by renowned Modernist—and one-time faculty member—Alvin Lustig on the cover of its viewbook. Better still, each cover was a unique piece, created from an algorithm that made 40,500 unique covers. ArtCenter promised that this idea was borne of its desire to convey the “unique education” each student receives. Throughout this bright, weighty, and thoroughly modern perfect-bound book, ArtCenter puts its students’ work front and center. “We learn by making,” the book promises. ArtCenter is “like a conservatory for inspiring performing artists.” The school’s mission, along with a strong sense of possibility and excitement, are evident from the beginning, and the many examples of beautifully printed student artwork convey this sense, page after page.

Earlier Story

At ArtCenter, each student receives a unique education. Reflecting that experience was the driving force behind the design of our 2019–2020 Viewbook. Each copy is a one-of-a-kind publication. Literally. Over 40,000 copies were produced and every single copy has a different cover, identified by a unique serial number on the cover and spine.

This cover design (or covers design) was selected as one of the 50 best book cover designs of 2018 by AIGA and Design Observer’s prestigious 50 Books | 50 Covers competition.

In announcing the selections, Design Observer noted, “[t]he jury—chaired by Jessica Helfand and consisting of Lucinda Hitchcock, Daphne Geismar, and Henk van Assen—carefully considered the over 700 entries from 29 countries, including Australia, Brazil, India, Iran, Norway, Singapore, Slovenia, South Korea, Turkey, and the United Arab Emirates. These selections are the best of the best.”

Each printed cover features a one-of-a-kind configuration of modular geometric elements. Arranged (and rearranged) via a special algorithm, these elements were inspired by Alvin Lustig, a West Coast design pioneer who studied and later taught at ArtCenter in the ’30s and ’40s.

ArtCenter’s biannual Viewbook is published by the Marketing and Communications department and it takes the combined effort of many people to produce. The 2019–20 Viewbook was designed by Brad Bartlett, director and professor of Transmedia in the Graphic Design Department, with additional coding and design by Alex Seth (MFA 18), a recent Graduate Graphic Design alum and, now, a transmedia graphic designer in the Marketing and Communications department. Additional team members involved in creating the Viewbook include Scott Taylor, Mike Winder, Juan Posada, Ellie Eisner, Audrey Krauss and Jered Gold.

Complementing the cover design, the 2019-20 Viewbook was set with a unique monospace font created by alumnus Josh Finklea (BFA 12 Graphic Design).

Learn more about the Viewbook, view a slide show of a selection of unique covers and download your own digital version (with the opportunity to select from a variety of covers) on our website.

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“Inside the Outside of Culture” exhibition on view at 950 building through June 1

Photo courtesy Maggie Michella

Photo courtesy Maggie Michella

Advertising student Maggie Michella submitted the following description of her work on view on the second floor of the 950 building at South Campus through June 1, 2019.

Racism compels artists to create social impact with their work. ArtCenter College of Design wants to embrace and support the diversity in our student body. Advertising student Maggie Michella took on an independent study with faculty member Ramone Muñoz exploring experimental communication. The study resulted in the exhibition “Inside the Outside of Culture” that will be on view from April 15 – June 1 on the second floor of the 950 building of the South Campus. The work depicts 25 versions of Leonardo Da Vinci’s famed painting of the Mona Lisa. On close inspection, the viewer will note that the eyes of each reproduction have been altered to reflect the eyes of peoples from 5 different regions of 5 different countries in Asia: China, Japan, Korea, Thailand, and Vietnam. This project refutes the stereotypic notion that  ’all Asians look the same’  while raising questions related to xenophobia, eurocentric art history, and the recognition that we are all part of one humanity, no matter how we look on the outside. Ms. Michella’s project explores these issues in the context of the advertising industry and how advertising mirrors, or should mirror, the multiracial U.S. population.

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ArtCenter community bands together to support former teacher and colleague Paul Hauge

Paul Hauge circa 1984. Photographer unknown. Image courtesy ArtCenter Archives.

Paul Hauge circa 1984. Photographer unknown. Image courtesy ArtCenter Archives.

For many of us, it is our toughest teachers we remember with the most affection. Not because we learned the most from them, although we usually did, but because their toughness signaled a confidence in us—that we were worth teaching, that we had potential. ArtCenter alum, former Graphic Design Chair and faculty member Paul Hauge was one of those teachers.

When asked about designers who influenced him, Paul once recounted, “early on during my student experience at ArtCenter, Lou Danziger pierced my rather large, over inflated self-absorbed ‘ego balloon’ which has saved my professional and private life on more occasions than I care to mention.”

I met Paul in San Francisco when my career was young and my goals were vague at best. Knowing next to nothing about graphic design, I had been asked to help with copywriting and editing for the Academy of Art College (now University) catalog. Paul was the lead designer and I recall battling with him regularly over the amount of copy I believed was essential. Early on in our relationship, he pierced my over inflated self-absorbed ego, passing on the lesson he learned from the aforementioned Danziger, and, in doing so, he helped me become a better writer. We worked together on a number of projects over the next few years and I continued to find his high standards exhausting but came to appreciate the thought and care he devoted to everything he did. Still, I was convinced he thought I was a complete idiot.

Paul Hauge and Steve Kim at work in Graphic Design office. Photo courtesy Nik Hafermaas

Paul Hauge and Steve Kim at work in Graphic Design office. Photo courtesy Nik Hafermaas

Many years and a few career moves later, I joined the Marketing and Communications team at ArtCenter and was delighted to run into Paul in the Student Dining Room. While we were reminiscing, I remember saying, “I had no idea what I was doing back in those days.”

Laughing, he replied, “you were one of the few that did.”

Paul’s relationship with ArtCenter started in the 1960s when he enrolled in the Advertising program (Graphic Design did not yet exist as a department). After graduating, Paul joined forces with fellow alum Hal Frazier, forming an enduring friendship and professional partnership that spanned more than 50 years and two continents. Together they founded Neumarket Design Associates in 1967, which started as a graphic design studio focused on print materials but developed into a full-service creative agency that was revolutionary at the time. Working directly with clients, eliminating account supervisors, the duo branched into packaging, commercial interiors, television commercials and titles, fashion presentations, cosmetic promotions and, for one client, singer Andy Williams, a beach house.

Paul and Hal also brought their innovative ideas and exacting standards back to ArtCenter, taking teaching and leadership roles at the College both in Pasadena and at ArtCenter Europe (which existed from 1986–1996).

As a teacher, Paul pushed students to be the best they could be, demanding that they gain a deep understanding of the work and the ability to explain it. The biggest sin was to design without purpose.

“The intelligent graphic designers think before they begin to manipulate art elements. This process is not gratuitous, but rather an articulate method of problem solving resulting in astute graphic solutions that truly motivate and communicate. To do otherwise is merely decoration,” Paul explained in ArtCenter’s 1981 catalog.

As a department chair, Paul mentored faculty, some of them former students. Ramone Muñoz recalls, “Paul created a sense of family among his teachers, which made them work together and work harder.”

Paul Hauge and guests viewing student work. 1975. Photo: Alice Hall

Paul Hauge and guests viewing student work. 1975. Photo: Alice Hall

Growing up an only child, ArtCenter became Paul’s family. Fiercely devoted to his career, students, colleagues and friends, Paul and his influence lives on. Those he taught and inspired have become designers, educators and mentors to the next generations. It is an enduring legacy that continues to enrich the design world.

And now, equally devoted friends and former colleagues have rallied to support Paul as his health has deteriorated.

Following his retirement in 2012, Paul considered moving to Laguna Beach to be closer to Hal. Noting Hal was busy consulting and painting, and with hints Paul was going to need help and support settling into a new environment, Steve Sieler, a former student who kept in touch following graduation and had developed a close friendship with Paul, suggested instead Paul join him in the Bay Area, where he was living at the time, and where ArtCenter has a thriving alumni community.

“I hadn’t seen Paul regularly in recent years up to that point, so, upon his arrival, it was a surprise for me to see how much he was struggling with confusion and forgetfulness,” said Steve. Regrettably, Steve was witnessing his friend and mentor experiencing the first stages of Alzheimer’s disease.

“Despite the unexpected and weighty responsibility of managing his needs,” Steve related, “I couldn’t turn away from someone who, up to that point in my life, had been a teacher, mentor, style-guru, influencer and friend. So, I began to help him manage his affairs. At first, we did it together; eventually it became my sole responsibility.”

Steve Kim, Paul Hauge, Nik Hafermaas, Steve Sieler. Photo courtesy Nik Hafermaas

Steve Kim, Paul Hauge, Nik Hafermaas, Steve Sieler. Photo courtesy Nik Hafermaas

Today, Paul lives in Laguna Niguel, in a care environment that supports his modest needs. Unfortunately, his expenses exceed his income. With limited, declining savings, Steve enlisted the help of fellow alum and current ArtCenter faculty member Dana Herkelrath, who was the first to raise her hand to say, “I want to help.”

Together, Dana and Steve spread word of Paul’s situation to a small number of former ArtCenter students and colleagues. For the past year, they have helped supplement Paul’s resources.

But, Steve notes, “our support group is small. And it’s becoming too much to continue to rely on these gracious, enthusiastic and generous individuals.”

Steve and Dana have recently created a GoFundMe campaign to raise money to cover Paul’s continued care. Knowing he impacted so many lives and careers, they hope to reach those in the ArtCenter community who are not already aware of Paul’s situation.

Paul embraced ArtCenter, devoted his life to this community and influenced so many of us—I can’t think of a better reward than for him to experience the love and support that comes from being part of our large extended ArtCenter family.

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Grad Art exhibition to open ArtCenter DTLA (formerly The Main Museum)

A presentation during Jeff Higashi’s Design for Health and Wellbeing class held at ArtCenter DTLA. Photo by Juan Posada.

A presentation during Jeff Higashi’s Design for Health and Wellbeing class held at ArtCenter DTLA. Photo by Juan Posada.

ArtCenter has agreed to utilize The Main Museum space, along Gallery Row at 114 W. 4 th Street in the city’s Old Bank District, for $1 a year for the next 10 years. The space will be renamed ArtCenter DTLA.

Among the first activities planned for ArtCenter’s new downtown location is an exhibit of artwork from MFA candidates in the College’s Graduate Art program. The “Going Clear” exhibition opens May 16 and continues through June 23. ArtCenter will offer workshops as part of the school’s public extension program and lectures centered around diversity, equity and inclusion. The College also intends to participate in the Downtown Los Angeles Art Walk on the 2nd Thursday of each month when local galleries and art studios open their doors to the public.

“Our recent partnership with The Main provided us an opportunity to work with an incredible community of artists and activists, thinkers and makers in the Downtown area,” said ArtCenter Provost Karen Hofmann.

“As ArtCenter educational experiences continue to evolve, it’s imperative that we engage with the local community, and this new space sets us up to do just that.”

The site formerly housed The Main Museum, which opened in 2016 as an institution focused on Los Angeles art and artists. In May 2018, the College announced a programmatic partnership with The Main, through which ArtCenter used the location for a variety of purposes, including pop-up studio classrooms, public lectures, and as a home base for a number of public-facing projects. Simultaneously, under the guidance of museum director Allison Agsten and deputy director Alex Capriotti, The Main continued to run a residency program, gallery exhibitions and office hours for emerging artists.

Museum staff stepped down at the end of 2018 and the museum officially ceased operations. However, the partnership sparked conversations about the space between ArtCenter and museum co-founders Gilmore and Perrone.

“We owe a debt of gratitude to Allison and Alex for introducing us to The Main and its wonderful, vibrant community,” Buchman added. “We’re proud to pick up on the great work they started, even as we add our own dimension of professional and student work, incorporate a focus on design, and provide new educational opportunities for the public.”

Tom Gilmore and Jerri Perrone are partners in Gilmore Associates and co-founders of The Main Museum. Gilmore Associates will continue to own the 11,500 square-foot building which includes a 3,500 square-foot gallery on the ground floor and a second 2,750 square-foot gallery on the mezzanine, as well as artist studios and administrative offices.

“We’re grateful to Tom and Jerri for their generosity in providing us with this new downtown space,” Buchman said. “We plan to serve as a resource to the L.A. art community by presenting exhibitions and programs integrating the mission of the former Main Museum with the mission of ArtCenter.”

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Product Design graduate is a force of good

AMeddaughReceiving recognition from industry for a student project is a lofty, but not unreasonable, goal for an ArtCenter student. It is also not unusual for an award-winning project to be recognized by multiple organizations. Having that project attract the attention of the national media happens with less frequency—and it would have been hard to predict that the most recent student project to attract this level of attention was a portable toilet design.

For Product Design student Anna Meddaugh, however, who came to ArtCenter to pursue social impact design after a career in public health, her Night Loo project, that has the potential to save refugee women and girls from the threat of sexual violence, is a natural blending of her background and interests.

In addition to a BS in Product Design and a minor in Social Innovation offered by the Designmatters department, Anna is graduating with distinction and was a nominee for the Student Leadership Award.

Driven by “a desire to be a force for good in the world,” she served as a mentor to her peers at the same time as helping communities, both local and international, through Designmatters. We caught up with the high-achiever shortly before graduation to check in on the status of the Night Loo and her plans for the future.

Campus News: What drew you to ArtCenter?

Anna Meddaugh: I chose ArtCenter for the Designmatters program, following my passion for social design.

CN: As a second-career student, how has your past experience informed your approach as a student and as a designer?

AM: My previous career in public health (and previous degree in sociology) definitely informs my perspective throughout the design process—particularly when considering what motivates users, or the broader impacts of a design solution. I tend to gravitate toward projects that have a social impact or public health element to them— the types of problems I’m most interested in solving.

CN: One of your projects, the Night Loo, gained tremendous attention, receiving recognition from the Core77 Design Awards (Student Notable), the James Dyson Award (National Finalist), the Denhart Sustainability Award (Special Recognition) and the Global Grad Show in Dubai. Additionally, Fast CompanyDezeen and Azure all wrote stories about the project.

Was the attention welcome or a distraction? What was the most surprising or rewarding aspect of receiving recognition for this project?

AM: The recognition has been a strong motivator for continuing to develop the Night Loo and working to bring it into production; until I bring a solution to those who need it, the awards feel premature.

The most rewarding aspect has been discovering that other people agree that the safety and dignity of refugee women and girls matters. This gives me hope for humanity.

CN: Where is the Night Loo now—is there thought to developing it into a product?

AM: I redesigned the Night Loo as my capstone project, and my next steps are establishing partnerships, pursuing funding and user testing in refugee camps.

CN: What part of being a student at ArtCenter have you enjoyed the most?

AM: Connecting with amazing people—fellow students, faculty and staff, alike.

CN: What is your favorite place on campus?

AM: Wherever the deer are!

CN: What are you looking forward to doing once you are no longer an ArtCenter student?

AM: I’m looking forward to establishing a healthier balance of work and leisure time—especially relaxing with friends.

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Leadership is not always comfortable and student leader Lauren Williams is OK with that

Photo: Juan Posada

Photo: Juan Posada

An ArtCenter education is demanding and rigorous and we expect our students to become the best they can be; one student expects the same from us.

Inspired by James Baldwin, who famously insisted on his right to “criticize America perpetually”, Lauren Williams, MFA candidate in Media Design Practices, has participated in the ArtCenter community with a critical eye and a focused determination to leave it a better institution than she found it. Coming from a place of admiration and respect, she resolutely demanded the College face complex and uncomfortable issues of racism, intentionally and directly. Recognizing her leadership and contributions to the College, Williams has been chosen as the Spring 2019 recipient of the Student Leadership Award.

Each term, the College reaches out to the campus population for nominations from peers, faculty and staff. All nominations are considered by a committee of faculty, staff and students and they select the student who most demonstrates leadership through their participation in ArtCenter’s campus life, community outreach, student organizations and department initiatives.

Williams entered ArtCenter in the fall of 2016, a time when institutions of higher education throughout the country were reacting to a new wave of student activism focusing on issues of racism on campus. Although ArtCenter had prioritized efforts to create a more diverse community of people (students, faculty and staff) and thought (curriculum and culture), Williams saw a pressing need to focus on issues of equity—desiring “a learning environment and academic community free of race-related aggressions, small or large, intentional or unintentional; procedures to air grievances and processes to hold aggressors (whether individuals or the institution) accountable when these aggressions do occur; and safe spaces that remind them they belong here.” (antiracistclassroom.com, Our Stories) As a result, Williams, along with fellow MDP students Bianca Nozaki-Nasser and Godiva Veliganilao Reisenbichler launched The Antiracist Classroom initiative (ARC).

Describing the impact of the ARC, a faculty member noted, “Lauren, with her signature forthrightness and dexterity managed to not only build a kind of informal consortium of antiracist entities at ArtCenter – ranging from undergraduate student clubs to individual faculty members incorporating antiracist pedagogy into their classes to library staff assembling archives of art and design work by students of color—but to develop and lead ArtCenter’s first graduate student conference (“Reconstructing Practice”) focusing on antiracist practices in art and design education, for which she also secured institutional funding.”

“Reconstructing Practice” was, in the eyes of one faculty member, “by far the most meaningful and impressive [academic symposia at ArtCenter] down to its very last detail.”

In addition to her work with the Antiracist Classroom, as student member of the College’s Research Committee Williams undertook a comprehensive review of current research practices, interviewing over 40 faculty and staff members and producing a detailed report that included recommendations on how to make the College’s research more professional, ethical and in line with standards at peer institutions. By delivering the report, she singlehandedly completed a project that had languished on the Committee’s agenda for years.

Lauren used what one faculty member described as her “formidable professional skillset,” developed during her pre-ArtCenter experience in the non-profit world, to every endeavor she tackled in her efforts to transform and improve the College.

That background proved invaluable when she signed on as a Teaching Assistant for the then-new Study Away course, Learning from Detroit, which challenged students to conduct community-based research to identify new frameworks and vocabularies for thinking about the city and its role in the US and world. Her experience with qualitative research, policy advocacy and program management proved essential not only to the construction of the curriculum but also the development of community networks in Detroit.

Fellow students who wrote in support of Williams’ nomination admired her courage in tackling difficult issues at the College with unwavering forthrightness, dedication to the community, depth of knowledge and teaching skills and personal kindness, patience and encouragement.

One faculty member was effusive in her admiration, “[s]tudents like Lauren are the reason I teach; colleagues like Lauren are the reason I continue to choose a career in design education.”

Choosing one student to receive this coveted award is always a difficult task for the committee. Each term, there are nominees who are not chosen who have, without question, shaped and contributed to the ArtCenter community in impressive ways and they all deserve recognition for their cocurricular efforts to enhance and improve the College experience for others.

Product Design graduate Anna Meddaugh was nominated for the Leadership Award in recognition of tireless dedication to and support for her fellow students. Entering ArtCenter at the age of 40, Meddaugh worked for 11 different departments at ArtCenter, taking on roles of Student Worker, Teaching Assistant and Peer Coach, among others. Embodying qualities she values in others—be generous (with ideas, praise, encouragement); be respectful, kind and gentle; be truthful—Meddaugh engendered great affection and admiration from the community members who nominated her.

Tito Gonzalez, a first-generation college student and child of immigrants, was a champion for his fellow students. As the student government department representative for the Transportation Design department, he took time to introduce himself in classes so that the students he represented would be comfortable seeking him out if they needed him. Witnessing the toll that the overwhelming workload of one class had on fellow students, he approached department leadership to explain the cost, both financial (when students split the course over two terms resulting in double tuition) and physical (when students would forgo sleeping and eating to complete the required work in a timely manner). The department listened and modified course requirements to a more reasonable level. Tito also worked closely with a past beloved faculty member, Pamela Blackwell, to bring design to impoverished youth communities and planned a showcase of cherished photographs on campus at the 2017 Car Classic from Pamela’s family collection after her death. He was also instrumental in proposing and shaping the Food Insecurity program on campus that provides food and/or prepaid cafeteria cards to any student who is hungry through his work with the Diversity Council.

Nick Laub was recognized by the community for his dedication to his peers as a mentor and leader. He served as a student Orientation Leader for ten terms, participated in student government as a department representative and vice president and worked as a teaching assistant for numerous classes over four departments.

Asli Akdemir was commended for her advocacy, leadership and commitment to the community. Serving in various student government roles and working as a teaching assistant, nominators noted her kindness, generosity and willingness to support her peers as well as her confidence, fearlessness and determination to make a positive impact at ArtCenter.

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Footwear Design Legend D’Wayne Edwards to speak at Spring Graduation

Credit: Marcus Yam

Credit: Marcus Yam

Inspirational footwear design legend D’Wayne Edwards will receive an honorary degree from ArtCenter and deliver the commencement address at the spring graduation ceremony Saturday, April 27, 2019, 10 a.m. at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium. Following the ceremony, which will be livestreamed here, Grad Show will be open in the Pasadena Convention Center where the approximately 220 spring graduates have their work on display.

Edwards, former design director of Nike’s Jordan brand, has mentored hundreds of sneaker fans and young creatives, guiding them to become designers through his PENSOLE Academy in Portland, Oregon.

Edwards’ start in the industry came after he submitted a new shoe sketch every day into the suggestion box of L.A. Gear, where he worked as a file clerk. After six months, the suggestion he included with every sketch, to hire him as a footwear designer, was realized. At 19, he became the youngest, and one of the few African American footwear designers in the industry. His designs have sold more than $1 billion worldwide.

Los Angeles native Edwards started PENSOLE as a place where students from diverse backgrounds could learn footwear design. Collaborating with ArtCenter and corporations such as Foot Locker, he has created a footwear designer pipeline to employment at top brands.

He has been instrumental in expanding the network and programming for the College in Portland and will be recognized for his accomplishments and the impact he has had on ArtCenter’s community.

“D’Wayne is a visionary who has made career dreams come true for so many aspiring designers,” said ArtCenter Provost Karen Hofmann. “His commitment to educate a diverse next generation of footwear design professionals and work with brands to employ this new wave of talent is an extraordinary achievement that will create incredible value for the industry and the market for years to come.”

Each year, ArtCenter students travel to Portland to immerse themselves in the footwear and sports apparel mecca. Students attend workshops at PENSOLE to envision future concepts, create prototypes for target markets, participate in brand-sponsored projects and study-away intensive programs to learn the business side of footwear design. During the PENSOLE workshops, Edwards invites numerous design professionals from top athletic brands such as Nike, adidas and Under Armour, to critique the work and provide career advice. Many of the guests, who are ArtCenter alumni and worked with Edwards during his career, are involved based on the “pay it forward” premise to mentor the next generation of designers.

Among those mentored by Edwards is alum Ari Montanez, who realized his NBA dreams through design. While in high school, Montanez met Edwards who suggested he apply to ArtCenter. Montanez followed Edwards’ advice and recently earned a degree in Product Design. A few months before he graduated, Montanez accepted a job offer from No.One, a start-up sneaker company in Venice specializing in high-end handmade shoes. “I realized I may not be able to make it on the court as a player but I can figure out a way to make it on the court with my drawing,” said Montanez.

ArtCenter has a long history of placing graduates at the major footwear brands. Footwear design leaders and alumni such as Kevin Fallon at Under Armour, Safir Bellali at VF Corporation, Al Van Noy and John Munns at adidas, and Martin Lotti and Mark Smith at Nike return to the Pasadena campus often to tap the minds of students. They sponsor classes and recruit new talent in order to remain relevant in the dynamic and competitive world of footwear design.

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Pasadena’s ArtNight, with ArtCenter origins, brings visitors to galleries on both campuses

Photo: Chris Hatcher

Photo: Chris Hatcher

ArtNight Pasadena, a bi-annual open house featuring over 20 Pasadena arts, cultural, music and performance organizations, held March 8, drew hundreds of visitors to ArtCenter to view exhibitions at three of our galleries, from Hillside to South Campus.

ArtNight is a free public event with ArtCenter origins. Twenty years ago Vice President and Williamson Gallery Director Stephen Nowlin and Armory Center for the Arts’ Gallery Director Jay Belloili collaborated on the idea of promoting the many cultural offerings in to be found in Pasadena. Working with colleagues at the Norton Simon Museum, One Colorado and Southwest Chamber Music, ArtNight was born. Designers from our Marketing and Communications Department have provided pro-bono graphic design for the event since its inception. The original ArtNight logo was designed by an ArtCenter student in 1999 and redesigned by MarCom’s design team in 2004.

Two decades later, ArtNight is a model public/private partnership. With the City of Pasadena’s Arts and Cultural Affairs Department as general manager along with a committee of reps from each non-profit venue and generous funding from the Pasadena Arts and Culture Commission, the popular occasion takes place the second Fridays of March and October. Each evening draws over 30,000 visitors who explore exhibits, performances and activities, and utilize free shuttle-buses that ferry them from venue to venue throughout the four-hour long festivities. Hundreds of guests explored ArtCenter’s galleries—GARB at Hillside’s Williamson Gallery, Mike/Sierra/Tangotypography at the Hoffmitz Milken Center for Typography at South Campus’ 950 building, and Details of Design at the 1111 building’s Mullin Gallery, were all official participants in the March 2019 ArtNight.

The next ArtNight will take place on October 11, 2019, from 6 to 10pm. Grab a friend, gather the family, and experience the fun, diversity, wonder, and intrigue of the arts in Pasadena!

See artnightpasadena.org for more information.

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#ComicSansTakeover—the much-maligned font gains respectability for accessibility

ACCD_comicsansThousands of designers descended on Pasadena last week to attend the AIGA Design Conference. One of the highlights of the first day was a talk given by Liz Jackson, founder of The Disabled List, a disability-led, self advocacy organization that is creating opportunities in design by integrating specific, disability-led ways of knowing into design pedagogy and practice.

As part of her talk, Jackson encouraged those in attendance to participate in a #ComicSansTakeover, redesigning their organization’s logo using the Comic Sans font and posting it on social media.

While Comic Sans is hated by most graphic designers, it is actually one of the most accessible fonts for people with disabilities (because it is sanserif and imperfect, it is particularly easy for people with dyslexia to read).

As Jackson explained on Twitter, “the goal with #ComicSansTakeover is to get designers and organizations to think deeply about their perceptions of and practices around disability. I want you to ask what disability could mean for your brand. What are your best practices?”

The challenge was quickly met, as Pentagram Design. AIGA, Very Nice, AIGA Eye on Design, an accounting firm in the UK (Pennine) and more quickly posted their Comic Sans logos. ArtCenter participated with versions for the College and for our Designmatters program.

Our commitment goes beyond tweeting a logo—we don’t want to ignore the message behind the challenge and we must and will do more to design with disability, rather than for disability.

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