SVA’s Sagmeister, Antonelli, Millman and More at HOW Design Live

May 8, 2014

HOW Design Live, the country’s largest gathering of creative professionals, opens in Boston on May 12, and SVA will be well represented both on stage and off.  Several SVA faculty members will be speaking, and the College has teamed up with conference organizers to present an exhibition of more than 50 of the myriad posters created for display in the vast New York City subway system.


On Monday, May 12, 5:30pm, faculty member (MFA Products of Design and MFA Design Research, Writing and Criticism) and MoMA Senior Curator Paola Antonelli gives the day’s keynote, “Broken Nature.” According to the World Wildlife Fund, August 20, 2013, marked Earth Overshoot day— the estimated date when people on Earth have used up the planet’s annual supply of renewable natural resources and reached its carbon-absorbing capacity. Taking this as a prompt to reorient our design relationship to nature, what does it mean as a designer to move beyond political or chemical correctness?

DebbieMillmanOn Tuesday, May 13, 9:00am, MPS Branding Chair and Sterling Brands President for Design Debbie Millman interviews Seth Godin, the founder of, one of the most popular sites on the Web. Godin is also the author of 17 bestselling books on topics ranging from the post-industrial revolution and the ways ideas spread, to quitting, leadership and more.

On Tuesday, May 13, 3:15pm, Jake Barton, principal at the AIGA award-winning Local Projects and advisor to MFA Interaction Design, talks about how to innovate and create new designs while managing risk, and how to move projects from “the work you have” to “the work you want to have.”

On Wednesday, May 14, 2:00pm, MPS Branding faculty member Scott Lerman talks about building better brands. Lerman has guided the development of branding programs for many of the world’s most influential brands—including Caterpillar, American Express, Owens-Illinois, 3M, National Semiconductor, Bayer, and Harley-Davidson. (For a preview, check out Lerman’s recent appearance on on Debbie Millman’s podcast series Design Matters.)

Also Wednesday, 9:00am, Michael Walsh, SVA’s director of design and digital media, will talk about the SVA Is… video series, a showcase for animated and live-action experimental shorts by Gail Anderson, James Victore and other SVA faculty and alumni. The SVA Is… videos will be screened throughout the In-Howse Management Conference.

On Friday, May 16, 11:30am, MFA Design faculty member Stefan Sagmeister (pictured below, center, in one of the posters he designed for SVA) takes the stage to ask, How can you be happy—both as a person and as a designer? He’ll offer tactics for making sure work remains a calling without deteriorating into a job and preview his upcoming documentary feature, The Happy Film.


Curated by SVA Executive Vice President Anthony P. Rhodes, who has been creative director for the posters since 2007, “Underground Images: School of Visual Arts Subway Posters, 1947 to the Present” offers a glimpse of SVA history and the collective talent of its design and illustration faculty, including Gail Anderson, Ivan Chermayeff, Milton Glaser, Stefan Sagmeister and James Victore. The exhibition will be on view on the Plaza Level in Pre-Function Hall A and Pre-Function Hall B, Hynes Convention Center, Monday, May 12 through Friday, May 16.

SVA will be live tweeting talks by Antonelli, Barton, Lerman and Millman using the hashtag #SVAxHOW.


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