Paul Rand

My wife and I went to a small show at the Museum of the City of New York: Everything is Design: The Work of Paul Rand. I’ve been a fan of Paul Rand since my undergraduate days in fine arts when I’d pour through his work in Adweek annual compilations. An incredible amount of modern graphic art is standing on his shoulders.

Paul Rand is best known for iconic corporate logo designs for IBM, Westinghouse, NeXT*, UPS, ABC, and more but he did all types of design work: magazines page layout, all types of advertising, IBM Selectric typewriters, and more. He also illustrated children’s books that his wife wrote: I Know a Lot of Things and Sparkle and Spin: A Book About Words.

The Cooper Hewitt has a very nice biography with illustrations: Paul Rand, American, 1914-1996, Illustrations/Objects.

There is also a connection to the work of Charles and Ray Eames here: similar Bauhaus influence and the “modern” 1950s which was wide open to this kind of work.

*The fact that Steve Jobs paid him $100,000 for the NeXT logo and corporate ID is a legendary story.

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