Eye for Design Exhibition at The MAD

Eye for Design explores the unique graphic identity created by the Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) in the 1960s and 1970s through its imaginatively designed exhibition catalogues and related ephemera. The examples gathered here—drawn primarily from MAD’s archive or that of the American Craft Council—were designed by many American and international graphic artists, including Emil Antonucci, John J. Reiss, and Linda Hinrichs. At a time when the field of graphic design was becoming increasingly corporate, these designers rejected the minimal abstraction of the brand logo in favor of hand-rendered illustration, playful use of typography, vibrant color, and inventive adaptation of the catalogue form. Instead of promoting an exhibition’s actual works, these techniques and treatments were used metaphorically, to communicate distinctive artistic sensibilities that privilege ideals of creativity, experimentation, and hand-making, as well as the value of experience over passive contemplation.


The design approaches you see here fuse art world influences—from Pop art to Henri Matisse’s cutouts to Fluxus-inspired multiples—with popular graphic design styles and technologies, including the visually associative posters of the counterculture and the rise of screenprinting. Along the way, Eye for Design tells a story of MAD’s distinctive exhibition program in the 1960s and 1970s, which embraced an expansive definition of craft, including forms of creative practice and sensory experiences that remain unorthodox in the art world today.

Start Date

June 7, 2016

End Date

September 18, 2016


10:00 AM - 06:00 PM


Museum of Arts and Design, 2 Columbus Circle New York, NY

Event Type


More Information

Museum of Arts & Design



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