One of the most watched medal ceremonies last week took place not in Vancouver but in Washington, DC, as President Obama presented the National Medal of Arts at the White House. Among those receiving the country’s highest honor for artistic excellence was SVA Acting Chairman and longtime faculty member Milton Glaser. As the first graphic designer to earn a medal, Glaser was commended for a lifetime devoted to improving the way people communicate through innovation in graphic design. Click the image below to view the video of the ceremony.
In addition to teaching at SVA since 1960, Glaser has created many of the iconic subway posters published by the College, some of which were exhibited last fall in “Milton Glaser’s SVA: A Legacy of Graphic Design.” New Yorkers can also experience Glaser’s work in person at the SVA Theatre, whose interiors and façade he designed.
Since the official announcement, design aficionados have noted that another of this year’s medalists, Bob Dylan, was memorably captured by Glaser in a 1966 poster that is in the collection of The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Other medalists include: Clint Eastwood, Maya Lin, Rita Moreno, Jessye Norman, Joseph P. Riley, Jr., Frank Stella, Michael Tilson Thomas and John Williams.
Image: Still from White House video.