When Paula Scher and her team at Pentagram delivered the refreshed identity for the New School, they provided a bold new typographic approach for the university. But figuring out how the identity translated into the hundreds of publications, events, school environments, and digital experiences was an ongoing endeavor. Working with the talented team of in-house designers and writers, I lead the design of many of the university’s print, events, and identity projects. The result is a robust visual system and approach that keeps the “new” resonant even after 100 years.
With seven distinct schools, and 19 buildings in New York alone, rebranding everything was an enormous undertaking as every touchpoint had to be updated from entire buildings down to the student ID cards.
Taking inspiration from Ladislav Sutnar and Otto Neurath, playful figures and illustrations add a bit of levity to otherwise dry material.
Just before the new brand was launched, these teaser posters were plastered up all over the university indicating that a big transformation was coming. With famous quotes about change, the posters stood out from the usual visual clutter and lacked any kind of traditional institutional voice. The only clue was the date at the bottom of each.
A variety of sub-brands needed to be created, including this one for the Nth Degree Series, a group of lectures, discussions, and performances that represent the best the New School has to offer. The identity defines what it means to take something to the nth degree at the New School.Posters for each of the events used the degree symbol to house information about a specific program. A calendar of events also made it easy to see what was on the horizon.