Herb Lubalin (1918–1981), who one might claim was the graphic designer who defined American culture from the 1950s through the 1970s, was best known for his groundbreaking design and whimsical typographic solutions for the magazines Avant Garde, Eros, and Fact.
The Herb Lubalin Study Center at the Cooper Union was established in 1985 to help preserve Lubalin’s vast collection of work. Not only did this solidify Lubalin's legacy but, it also served to provide the academic community and the general public free access to historic ephemera in an informal, hands on manner.
An extensive archive of Herb Lubalin’s work is at the core of the Center’s collection, including editorial design, typeface designs, posters, journals, magazines, logos, packaging, and identity designs from 1950 to 1981.
The Center also plays a role in documenting 20th and 21st Century American and European Graphic Design. Paul Rand, Lou Dorfsman, Push Pin Studios, Alvin Lustic, Lester Beall, Bradbury Thompson, Otl Aicher, Tibor Kalman, Massimo Vignelli, and countless other’s original works are also available to be viewed in the collection.
While the Lubalin Study Center seems serious and ambitious in its scope, it is friendly and accessible. There is nothing more satisfying than to be able to interact with an original piece of ephemera.
The Herb Lubalin Study Center of Design and Typography is located at 41 Cooper Sq, New York, NY 10003. (212) 353-4021, by appointment only.