Milton Glaser recently became the first graphic designer ever to be honored with the National Medal of Arts, established by Congress in 1984 to recognize “contributions to the creation, growth, and support for the arts in the U.S.”–past recipients have included composer Aaron Copland, architect Frank Gehry, poet Maya Angelou, and choreographer Twyla Tharp. Glaser is one of twelve 2009 recipients of the prestigious award, placing him in the distinguished company of arts legends and fellow 2009 honorees including Bob Dylan, Clint Eastwood, John Williams, and the School of American Ballet.
Glaser is perhaps best known as the man responsible for one of the most recognizable and oft-copied icons in our visual lexicon: I Heart NY, but his prolific career has seen multifarious endeavors ranging from murals, logos, and posters to packaging design, publishing, and book covers–most notably those done for longtime friend, author, and fellow national treasure (and National Medal of Arts recipient) Philip Roth.
Notoriously quotable, Glaser has given us such simple, pithy insights as “The purpose of art is to inform and delight,” and “Less isn’t more; just enough is more,” sharing with us a worldview in which design is a fundamental means of communication and art is a cognition-altering tool for relating more fully to the world.
Read more about Glaser’s thoughts on art, career, and life at idsgn.
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