Sign of the Times

Sign of the Times


Okay Design Fans, you KNOW that we have a crush on the architect Renzo Piano but our man just got bumped for the Graphic Designer, Michael Beirut.

Michael Beirut Headshot

Although we’ve spent time wandering the streets of Manhattan, gazing up at the signs like tourists (some of us are NOT), we had NO IDEA that the story behind the Looming SIGN on the New York Times building (designed by our previous boyfriend, Renzo) had such a fascinating back-story! Beirut is a type designer, product developer, author….we could go on and on. You’ll recognize a ton of his ground breaking work. Prepare to be awed.

Here’s a hint of the coolness lifted from the article that we are pointing you to this week:

“We were faced with the problem of how you put a big sign on the outside of a glass building without blocking anybody’s view.”  Bierut and the design firm Pentagram found a simple solution: “We ended up decomposing the logo itself into 800 plus smaller pieces, each one is shaped like a teardrop.”  Now employees working inside the building have a clear view outside, while passersby think they are staring at a solid logo.

You did WHAT??????Beirut Book Cover

Admit it, you want to toss roses at an idea that displays THIS level of genius. You now have a piece of trivia that will stop any conversation: “guess how they created the New York Times sign?”

We’re going to order his book this Holiday season to wow our design-loving friends and family. In addition to the general coolness of the content, there are FULL SIZE REPRODUCTIONS OF THE NOTEBOOKS THAT HE HAS MAINTAINED FOR OVER 30 YEARS!!!!!