Curriculum Vitae


Ellen Lupton is a writer, curator, educator, and designer. Lupton is the Betty Cooke and William O. Steinmetz Design Chair at MICA (Maryland Institute College of Art) in Baltimore, where she has authored numerous books on design processes, including Thinking with Type, Graphic Design Thinking, Graphic Design: The New Basics, and Type on Screen. She serves as a senior curator at Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum in New York City. Recent exhibitions include Herbert Bayer: Bauhaus Master, Face Values: Understanding A.I., The Senses: Design Beyond Vision, Beauty—Cooper Hewitt Design Triennial, How Posters Work, and Beautiful Users. Her book Design Is Storytelling was published by Cooper Hewitt in 2017. She received the AIGA Gold Medal for Lifetime Achievement in 2007. She was named a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences in 2019.


EDUCATION

BFA, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, 1985.
Doctorate in Communication Design (DCD), University of Baltimore, 2008.

CURATOR OF CONTEMPORARY DESIGN
COOPER HEWITT, SMITHSONIAN DESIGN MUSEUM

Exhibitions, 1992–present


Herbert Bayer: Bauhaus Master, 2019–2020

Face Values: Understanding A.I., 2019–2020

The Senses: Design Beyond Vision, 2018. Co-curated with Andrea Lipps.

Beauty—Cooper Hewitt Design Triennial, 2016. Co-curated with Andrea Lipps. Travel to San Jose Art Museum, Fall/Winter 2016–17.

How Posters Work, 2015. Organized with Caitlin Condell. Travel to Milwaukee Museum of Art, Spring 2017.

Beautiful Users, 2014. Traveled to Museum of Design Atlanta (MODA), Fall 2016.

Graphic Design: Now in Production, 2012. Curated with Andrew Blauvelt, Walker Art Center.

Why Design Now? National Design Triennial. 2010. Co-curated with Matilda McQuaid, Cara McCarty, and Cynthia Smith.

Rococo: The Continuing Curve, 1734–2008. Spring 2008. Co-curated with Sarah Coffin, Gail Davidson, and Penelope Hunter-Stiebel..

Design Life Now: National Design Triennial 2006. December 8, 2006-July 29,  2007. Co-curated with Barbara Bloemink, Brooke Hodge, and Matilda McQuaid.

Second Skin. Presented at Entry 2006, Essen, Germany, August 27–December 3, 2006.. Produced by Vitra Design Museum.

Feeding Desire: Design and the Tools of the Table, 1500–2005, May–October, 2006. The evolution of dining through the design of flatware.

Solos: New Design from Israel, January–April 2006. Survey of experimental objects and furniture created in Israel.

National Design Triennial: Inside Design Now. April 2003-January 2004.
Co-curated with Susan Yelavich, Donald Albrecht, and Mitchell Owens.

Skin: Surface, Substance and Design. May-September, 2002. Looks at the convergence of natural and artificial life as seen in contemporary furniture, fashion, architecture, and media.

National Design Triennial. March-August 2000. Review of recent developments in architecture, graphic design, and product design, co-curated with Donald Albrecht and Steven Skov Holt.

Graphic Design in the Mechanical Age: Selections from the Merrill C. Berman Collection. Winter 1999. Organized in association with Williams College Museum of Art.

Mixing Messages: Graphic Design in Contemporary Culture. Fall, 1996/Winter 1997. Critical survey of graphic design in the United States between 1980 and 1995, focusing on aesthetic, cultural, and technological changes.

The Avant-Garde Letterhead. Spring, 1996. Organized by the National Design Museum and presented at the national headquarters of the American Institute of Graphic Arts in New York. Co-curated with Elaine Lustig Cohen.

Elaine Lustig Cohen, Modern Graphic Designer (February 7 – May 23, 1995). Monographic exhibition on a designer active in the 1950s and 60s.

Living with AIDS: Education through Design (December 1, 1993 - January 2, 1994). A national survey of contemporary AIDS posters addressed to diverse audiences, including women, children, people of color, and straight and gay men.

Mechanical Brides: Women and Machines, from Home to Office (August 1993 – January 1994). An exhibition about the design and representation of objects which have been central to women’s work in the twentieth century, including the telephone, typewriter, washing machine, and electric iron. The exhibition travelled to the Pacific Design Center in Los Angeles, Spring 1994.

GRADAUTE FACULTY, GRAPHIC DESIGN MFA PROGRAM
MARYLAND INSTITUTE COLLEGE OF ART

2003-present


I launched a graduate program at Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore (MICA) in 2003. I served as chair of the undergraduate program from 1997-2002.

PUBLICATIONS: BOOKS

Herbert Bayer: Process and Inspiration in Design. Moleskine Books, 2020.

Health Design Thinking: Creating Products and Services for Better Health. Co-authored with Bon Ku, MD. Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum and MIT Press, 2020.

Design Is Storytelling
. Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, 2017.

The Senses: Design Beyond Vision. Edited with Andrea Lipps. Cooper-Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum and Princeton Architectural Press, 2018.

Design Is Storytelling. Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, 2017.

Beauty—Cooper Hewitt Design Triennial. Andrea Lipps and Ellen Lupton. New York: Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, 2016.

How Posters Work. Ellen Lupton. New York: Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, 2105.

Beautiful Users: Designing for People. Princeton Architectural Press and Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, 2014.

Type on Screen: A Guide for Designers, Developers, Editors, and Students. Edited by Ellen Lupton. New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2014.

Graphic Design: Now in Production. Edited by Andrew Blauvelt and Ellen Lupton. Minneapolis: Walker Art Center, 2012.

Graphic Design Thinking: Beyond Brainstorming. New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2010.

Thinking with Type: A Critical Guide for Designers, Writers, Editors, and Students, Revised and Expanded Second Edition. New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2010.

Exploring Materials: Creative Design for Everyday Objects. Co-authored with Inna Alesina. New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2010.

Design Your Life: The Pleasures and Perils of Everyday Things. Co-authored with Julia Lupton. New York: St Martins Press, 2009.

Indie Publishing: How to Design and Produce Your Own Book. Edited by Ellen Lupton. MICA and Princeton Architectural Press, 2008.

Graphic Design: The New Basics. Co-authored with Jennifer Cole Phillips. Princeton Architectural Press and Maryland Institute College of Art, 2008.       

D.I.Y. Kids. Co-authored with Julia Lupton. Princteon Architectural Press, 2007.

Feeding Desire: Design and the Tools of the Table, 1500–2005. Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum and Assouline, 2006. Co-edited with Sarah Coffin and Darra Goldstein.

Solos: New Design from Israel. Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, 2006. Co-authored with Ezri Tarazi.

D.I.Y.: Design It Yourself. Princeton Architectural Press, 2006.

 Thinking with Type: A Critical Guide for Designers, Writers, Editors, and Students. Princeton Architectural Press, 2004.

Inside Design Now: National Design Triennial. Princeton Architectural Press with Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, 2003. Co-authored with Susan Yelavich, Donald Albrecht, and Mitchell Owens.

Skin: Surface, Substance and Design. Princeton Architectural Press with Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, 2002.

Design Culture Now: National Design Triennial. Co-authored with Donald Albrecht and Steven Skov Holt. New York: Princeton Architectural Press with Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, 2000.

Graphic Design in the Mechanical Age: Selections from the Merrill C. Berman Collection.Co-authored with Deborah Rothschild and Darra Goldstein. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1998.

Mixing Messages: Graphic Design and Contemporary Culture. New York: Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum and Princeton Architectural Press, 1996. Edition for Europe and Asia published by Thames & Hudson, London.

Design Writing Research: Writing on Graphic Design. Co-authored with J. Abbott Miller. New York: Kiosk/Princeton Architectural Press, 1996.

Letters from the Avant-Garde: Modern Graphic Design. Co-authored with Elaine Lustig Cohen. New York: Kiosk/Princeton Architectural Press, 1996.

Mechanical Brides: Women and Machines from Home to Office. New York: Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum and Princeton Architectural Press, 1993.

The Bathroom, the Kitchen, and the Aesthetics of Waste, A Process of Elimination.Co-authored with J. Abbott Miller. New York and Cambridge: MIT List Visual Arts Center and Princeton Architectural Press, 1992.

Graphic Design and Typography in the Netherlands: A View of Recent Work, New York: The Cooper Union and Princeton Architectural Press, 1992.

The Bauhaus and Design Theory. Co-edited with J. Abbott Miller. New York: The Cooper Union and Princeton Architectural Press, 1991. Edition for Europe and Asia published by Thames and Hudson, London.

INDEPENDENT CURATOR

Framing the Art of Jewelry, August 2007. “Exhibition in Print” for Metalsmith magazine, the publication of the Society of North American Goldsmiths. Exhibition held at SOFA/Chicago (2007) and Museum of Contemporary Crafts, Portland, OR (2008).

Swarm, December 2005–March 2006. The Fabric Workshop and Museum, Philadelphia. Works of contemporary art and design that reflect the logic of the swarm (simple structures yielding complexity).

Comfort Zone. January-April 2002. The Fabric Workshop and Museum, Philadelphia. Exhibition of portable fabric structures by contemporary artists and designers, responding to human needs for comfort, safety, escape, and survival.

The Process of Elimination: The Bathroom, the Kitchen, and the Aesthetics of Waste. May-August 1992. MIT List Visual Arts Center, Cambridge. Co-curated with J. Abbott Miller. This exhibition looked at the history of the American bathroom and kitchen, 1890-1940, in relation to the rise of a consumer economy.

CURATOR, THE COOPER UNION

July 1985 – February 1992, Curator of the Herb Lubalin Study Center of Design and Typography, The Cooper Union. At the Lubalin Center, I organized exhibitions and related publications on graphic design, including the following:

Graphic Design in the Netherlands: A View of Recent Work. January 1992. Exhibition of posters, books, stamps, and corporate identity by emerging Dutch designers.

The Bauhaus and Design Theory, from Preschool to Post-Modernism. April 1991. Co-curated with J. Abbott Miller.

Dennis Livingston: Social Graphics. October 1990. The information graphics of a social activist.

Writing and the Body. April 1990. Curated with three design students, who examined the history of writing, sign language for the deaf, and AIDS in advertising.

Anthon Beeke’s Stage: Holland’s Illusionist Poster Designer. February 1990. Posters, magazines, and other graphics from the 1970s and 80s.

Numbers.September 1989. Co-curated with Alan Wolf, professor of physics. The culture and science of numbers.

MIT/Casey. April 1989. Work by a prominent American modernist working from the 1960s through the 80s.

Period Styles: A History of Punctuation. March 1988. A typographic, grammatical, and literary history.

Global Signage: Semiotics and the Language of International Pictures. March 1986. The history and theory of modern pictographic sign systems.


PUBLICATIONS: ESSAYS (selected)

“In Praise of the Broken Home.” NYTimes.com, 2010. 

“How to Lose a Legacy.” NYTimes.com, 2010. http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/07/12/how-to-lose-a-legacy/

“The Modern Kitchen (Again).” Metropolis. 2010.

“Helvetica: The Movie.” Review in Metropolis, 2007.

“Petra Blaisse: Inside/Outside.” Review in I.D.magazine, 2007.

“Deconstructing Kitchens.” Dwell, 2001.

“Profile: Carin Goldberg.” Graphis, 2001.

“Power Tools: The Electric Knife.” In Stud, collection of essays on design, architecture, and masculinity, edited by Joel Sanders. New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 1996.

“Graphic Design and Cultural Identity.” In Graphic Design USA. New York: American Institute of Graphic Arts, 1995.

“The Flesh of the Word: Profile of Johanna Drucker.” Eye (1995).

“Archive: Elaine Lustig Cohen.” Eye 17, 5 (1995): 8-9.

“Book Review: Modern Typography: An Essay in Critical History, by Robin Kinross.” Statements 10, 1 (Winter 1995): 14-16.

“Book Review: Fellow Readers: Notes on Multiplied Language, by Robin Kinross.” I.D.42, 3 (May/June 1995): 96.

“Deconstruction and Graphic Design: History Meets Theory.” With J. Abbott Miller. In special issue of Visible Language on graphic design history, edited by Andrew Blauvelt (1994).

“Neo-Ego: The Underground Matriarchy in Graphic Design.” With Laurie Haycock Makela. Eye (1994).

“A Post-Mortem on Deconstruction?” AIGA Journal of Graphic Design 12, 2 (1994): 24-26.

“Design as Research.” Co-authored with J. Abbott Miller. In The IOO Show: The Sixteenth Annual of the American Center for Design. Chicago: American Center for Design, 1994. 7-14.

“Case Study House: Comfort and Convenience.” With Jane Murphy. Assemblage 24 (1994): :86-89. Special issue on House Rules exhibition, Wexner Center, Ohio State University; curated by Mark Robbins.

“Critical Wayfinding.” Co-authored with J. Abbott Miller. In The Edge of the Millennium: An International Critique of Architecture, Urban Planning, Product and Communication Design. Ed. Susan Yelavich. New York: Whitney Library of Design, 1993. 220-232.

“Hygiene, Cuisine, and the Product World of Early Twentieth-Century America.” Co-authored with J. Abbott Miller. Zone 6: Incorporations. Ed. Jonathon Crary and Sanford Kwinter. New York: Zone Books, 1992.

“Archives and Collections: The Herb Lubalin Study Center, New York.” Journal of Design History 5, 1 (1992): 91-93.

“American Graphic Design, 1829-1989.” Co-authored with J. Abbott Miller. In Graphic Design in America, A Visual Language History. Ed. Mildred Friedman. New York: Harry Abrams, 1989.

“Line Art: Andy Warhol and the Commercial Art World of the 1950s.” With J. Abbott Miller. In Success is a Job in New York: The Early Art and Business of Andy Warhol. Exhibition catalogue. Ed. Donna de Salvo. New York: Grey Art Gallery, 1989.

“Reading Isotype.” In Design Discourse: History, Theory, Criticism. Ed. Victor Margolin. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1989.

“Cranbrook: The Academy of Deconstruction.” Eye: International Magazine of Graphic Design. Vol. 2 No. 1 (1991).

“Type Writing: Structuralism and Typography.” Co-authored with J. Abbott Miller. Emigre (Fall 1990).

“Book review: Envisioning Information.” ID Magazine(September/October 1990).
“Post Saturday Evening Post: Redesigning Magazines.” Print (November 1990).

“Period Styles: A History of Punctuation.” AIGA Journal of Graphic Design. Vol. 6 No. 4 (1989).

“1970s: Age of the Sign.” Print 43, 6 (December 1989):138-161.

Design Papers 5: Rhetorical Handbook. Co-authored with Hanno Ehses. Halifax: Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, 1988.

“The Mystique of Visual Language.” AIGA Journal of Graphic Design. Vol. 5 No. 3 (1987).


LECTURES (selected)

“Graphic Design Thinking,” four lectures in Brazil (Sao Paulo, Curitiba, Porto Alegre), 2016

“Design for the Senses,” UC Berkeley, Jacobs Institute for Innovation, 2016

“Design, Storytelling, and the Senses,” TYPO Conference, San Francisco, 2015

“Graphic Design and Cognition,” UC Berkeley, Berkeley CA, 2014

“Graphic Design—Now in Production,” Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, Rhode Island, 2014

“Designer as Author: Autobiography of an Idea.” Keynote address at aTypi Conference, Dublin, 2010.

“Design as Problem Solving.” Keynote address, Creativity and Problem Solving Conference for art educators, Guggenheim Museum, New York, June 2010.

“Designer as Author.” Malloy Lecture, Skidmore College, 2010.

“Details, Details.” Keynote address, University and College Designers Association conference, Savannah, 2008.

“The DIY Debate.” The Cooper Union Interdisciplinary Seminar, 2008.

“Design Tantrum.” University of Michigan, Penny Stamps Lecture Series, September 2007. Also delivered at Virginia Commonwealth University, North Carolina State University, George Mason University, and University of Maryland, 2008.

“Blogfest.” Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, 2007.

“D.I.Y.: Be Your Own Brand, Design Your Own Lifestyle.” Museum of Arts and Design, New York, 2007.

“Raw Type.” Society of Publication Designers, New York City, 2006.

“Univers Strikes Back.” Atypi international conference, Portugal, 2006.

“Crimes Against Typography.” AIGA National Conference, Boston, 2006.

“Skin: Surface, Substance and Design.” School of the Art Institute, Chicago, 2001; American Institute of Architects/BMA, 2001; School of the Museum of Fine Arts, 2001; Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, 2001; and other venues.

“Liquid Typography: Design Culture Now.” MIT Media Lab, October 1999; University of Michigan, 2000; and various other venues.

“Idioms of Production.” Delivered at symposium Graphic Design in the Post-Mechanical Age, organized by Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum (April 1999). Also at Bard Center for Graduate Studies in Design and Decorative Arts, New York City, 2001; Akron Museum of Art, 2001; Victoria and Albert Museum, 1998; and other venues.

“The Avant-Garde Letterhead.” Delivered at Modernism and Eclecticism 9 (School of Visual Arts, February 1996) and the AIGA.

“Design as Research: New Models of Practice and Education.” Delivered at University of Michigan School of Art (March 1996) and Cranbrook Academy of Art (March 1996).

“Mixing Messages: Graphic Design and Cultural Identity.” Modernism and Eclecticism 8, conference at School of Visual Arts, February 1995.

“Good Housekeeping: Design and Domestic Technology.” Yale University, School of Architecture. February 1995.

“Mechanical Brides: Women and Machines, from Home to Office.” I have lectured on this research at Princeton University, School of Architecture (March 1994), TED5, Monterey (February 1994), Massachusetts College of Art, Boston (October 1993), University of Maryland, Baltimore Campus (October 1993), Architectural League, New York (October 1993), Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (October 1993), AIA, New York (April 1993), Ohio StateUniversity (March 1993), Washington University (March 1993), School of Visual Arts Modernism and Eclecticism 7 conference (February 1993), and UC Irvine (November 1992).

“The Legacy of the Bauhaus in American Graphic Design.” Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, seminar on the Bauhaus in America, October 1994.

“Low and High: Design and Everyday Life.” Modernism and Eclecticism 6 conference, School of Visual Arts, February 1992. Talk also given at North Carolina State University, March 1992.

“Critical Wayfinding.” With J. Abbott Miller. Edge of the Millennium conference, Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum. February 1992.

“The Process of Elimination: The Bathroom, the Kitchen, and the Aesthetics of Waste.” Lectures on this research were given at Whitney Museum of American Art/Equitable Center (July 1992), UCLA (November 1991), SUNY Purchase (April 1991), UC Irvine (February 1991), SUNY Buffalo (October 1990), and Johns Hopkins University (October 1989).

“The Politics of Vision.” With J. Abbott Miller. AIGA National Conference, Chicago. October 1991.

“Glancing at the News: A Brief History of News Graphics.” Broadcast Design Association National Conference, Baltimore. June 1991.

“Shelf Life: A Cultural History of Packaged Food.” Modernism and Eclecticism 5 conference, School of Visual Arts. February 1990.

“Designing History: American Graphic Design, 1829-1989.” Walker Art Center, Minneapolis. October 1990.

“Contemporary American Typography.” Toyo School of Art, Tokyo. July 1989.

“Non-Verbal Agreements: Theory and Modern Graphic Design.” Yale University, Department of Art History and School of Art. February 1989.

“Global Signage: The International Hieroglyph and Modern Graphic Design.” MIT List Visual Arts Center, Cambridge. September 1986.

ARTICLES/PRESS COVERAGE (selected)

“Kicking the Tires.” Profile of Ellen Lupton by Penelope Greens, New York Times, 2009. http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/21/garden/21lupton.html

Critical reviews and feature articles about the exhibition National Design Triennial: Why Design Now? have appeared in numerous publications, including the New York Times, Washington Post, and Design Observer.

Critical reviews and feature articles on the exhibition National Design Triennial: Design Culture Now have appeared in The New York Times, New York Magazine, The Washington Post, The Philadelphia Enquirer, The Los Angeles Times, I.D. (2000), and other publications.

Critical reviews and feature articles on the exhibition Mixing Messages: Graphic Design in Contemporary Culture have appeared in The New York Times (September 1996), New York Magazine (September 1996), San Francisco Chronicle (September 1996), I.D. (September 1996), House Beautiful (September 1996), and other publications.

A feature article on the exhibitionThe Avant-Garde Letterhead appeared in The New York Times (March 1996).

Critical reviews of the book Design Writing Research: Writing on Graphic Design have appeared in I.D., Eye, Blueprint, and other publications.

Feature articles on the exhibition Elaine Lustig Cohen, Modern Graphic Designer have appeared in design journals including I.D., Eye, and Blueprint.

Critical reviews and feature articles on Mechanical Brides: Women and Machines from Home to Office appeared in The New York Times (December 19, August 22, August 20, and August 12, 1993); The Village Voice (August 31, 1993); The Philadelphia Inquirer (September 17, 1993); New York Magazine (September 6, 1993); Art in America (December 1993); Working Woman (September 1993); Vogue (August 1993), Blueprint (October 1993); Design Book Review (Winter/Spring 1995); The Journal of Design History 7, 1 (1994); The Journal of Architectural Historians, and other newspapers and magazines. Features were broadcast on CNN, CBS Evening News, and National Public Radio.

Reviews of the book The Bathroom, the Kitchen and the Aesthetics of Waste have appeared in Martha Stewart Living (February/March 1993), Metropolis, and The Winterthur Portfolio.

Critical reviews of The Bauhaus and Design Theory have appeared in Eye and in Design Book Review 25 (Summer 1992): 61-63.

“Works in Progress: Ellen Lupton.” Andrew Olds, I.D. Magazine (May/June 1991).

“The Bauhaus Style: Roots and Branch to be Shown.” Carol Vogel, The New York Times (March 15, 1991).

Reviews of the exhibition and book Graphic Design in America (Walker Art Center) which specifically referred to our catalogue essay include “MassComm 101: The Media vs. Modernism,” Peter Plagens, Newsweek (November 27, 1989); “Graphic Design in America,” Johanna Drucker, Artforum (March 1990); and “Living by Design,” Stewart Ewen, Art in America (June 1990).

“A History of Punctuation.” Karrie Jacobs, Metropolis (April 1988).

“The Pauses—,;:?!—That Refresh.” Richard F. Shepard. The New York Times (March 23, 1988). Review of Period Styles: A History of Punctuation.

PROFESSIONAL AWARDS AND ACTIVITIES

American Academy of Arts and Sciences, inducted 2019

Alliance Graphique Internationale (AGI), inducted 2016

AIGA Gold Medal for Lifetime Achievement, 2007

Recipient, Iris Award for History of Decorative Arts, 1999

AIGA Fifty Books/Fifty Covers award, for Design Culture Now, 2000

AIGA Fifty Books/Fifty Covers award, for Graphic Design in the  Mechanical Age, 1999

I.D. Magazine Distinction Award, packaging category, for Graphic Design in the Mechanical Age, 1999

First place, American Association of Museums publication design award, for Graphic Design in the Mechanical Age, 1999

Norton Family Foundation’s Curator’s Grant, $50,000 grant for exhibition development, 1997

Winner, 1996 New York Magazine Award, given to 10 New Yorkers who are shaping the life of the city

Recipient of the Chrysler Design Award, with J. Abbott Miller, 1993.

American Institute of Graphic Arts, National Board of Directors, 1992 - 1995

Panelist, New York State Council on the Arts, 1994 to the present

Juror, Architectural League’s Young Architects Competition, 1995

Winner, Best of Show award, Aldus Magazine annual design competition, 1994 for design of book The IOO Show

Chair, American Center for Design “100 Show,” 1993





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