Milton Glaser (b. 1929) is among the most celebrated graphic designers in the United States. He has had the distinction of one-man-shows at the Museum of Modern Art and the Georges Pompidou Center. He was selected for the lifetime achievement award of the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum (2004) and the Fulbright Association (2011), and in 2009 he was the first graphic designer to receive the National Medal of the Arts award. As a Fulbright scholar, Glaser studied with the painter Giorgio Morandi in Bologna, and is an articulate spokesman for the ethical practice of design. He opened Milton Glaser, Inc. in 1974, and continues to produce a prolific amount of work in many fields of design to this day.
In this announcement for a concert at Lincoln Center’s Philharmonic Hall, Glaser’s stylized portrait of the revered rock-and-roll singer features his trademark wide smile and his name on the diagonal over his dark shades. Glaser also created a poster for jazz musician Masakela’s solo appearance at Philharmonic Hall around the same time.
Using a theme line created by Sony’s adverting agency at the time, Glaser designs a shell-shaped ear in glorious colors to suggest the rich aural experience of listening to Sony audio tape. Its background: the profile of a 19th-century listener silhouetted against music notation paper. The poster pleased sufficiently to earn Glaser a follow-up commission in 1981.
For this annual summer arts festival held in upstate New York, Glaser places a Pan figure on a hill overlooking a lake with dreamy fantasies of color and harmony bubbling out of his overheated brain. Glaser also used this satyr in a poster for the 1985 retrospective of his own work in Pasadena.