I used to live near Pratt Institute, on Vanderbilt Avenue in Brooklyn. One of the many great graphic artists and designers that attended Pratt was Paul Rand (back in 1929). For those of you that don’t know the name (shame on you), Paul Rand (August 15, 1914 "“ November 26, 1996) was an American graphic designer, best known for his corporate logo designs, helping to originate the Swiss Style of graphic design, and keen thinking and curmudgeonly attitude about our profession.
I stumbled on a 1991 interview with Rand conducted by Miggs B, producer/host of “Miggs B On TV,” a public access TV show in Fairfield County, Connecticut.
Part 3 of the interview features an idiot known as “Art Mann,” – a bit of a ghoul – and obviously a bi-product of early 90’s baboonery. Rand doesn’t fully grasp the intended humor of a segment where Art claims that Westinghouse came to him to simplify their logo (one of Rand’s logo designs), which added uncomfortability to the hearty porridge of nonsense that was being served up to Rand in heaping spoonfuls.
However out of date the interview segment is, it is full of great nuggets from one of the “design greats.” One of Rand’s quotes that particularly impressed me was, "A good logo is meaningless until it is used." Good food for thought, indeed.
Dave Fletcher is a Founder and Creative Director at theMechanism, a multi-disciplinary design agency with offices in New York, London and Durban, South Africa.