A splash of green is needed, and fast, to paint a full picture of one of the most influential American graphic artists, Deborah Sussman. Called the queen of color, Deborah’s joyfully vibrant supergraphics and visual vocabulary (a standout is the program she designed for the 1984 Olympics), have created a graphic lexicon that continues to define L.A. style, even as its sensibility has made its way through fashion and interiors internationally in recent years. Her career of collaboration spans the now-storied Eames Studio to Frank Gehry to more recent work while still at the helm, at age 82, of the signature firm she and her husband, Paul Prejza, an urban planner and architect, founded in 1980, Sussman/Prejza.
Likewise, her work wasn’t limited to this city, but can be seen worldwide in both commercial, private and public arenas, from Disney World to the New Jersey Performing Arts Center. With nods to her dynamic palette, sense of geometry and pop cultural glee appearing everywhere these days from leggings to pillows to iPhones, a retrospective is finally underway—IF the Kickstarter campaign recently kicked off to underwrite the exhibition reaches its goal by this Sunday, November 24. Monies being raised will fund a month-long event at Woodbury University’s WUHO Gallery, covering all costs from staging panel discussions to the display cases for staging the exhibition. “Deborah Sussman Loves L.A.” is curated and organized by Catherine Gudis, Thomas Kracauer, Shannon Starkey and A+R pal Barbara Bestor, who gave us a heads up about the show and which we were only to excited to help underwrite.
And so it is, we urge you to donate $20 or whatever you can. The target is nearly reached. But if it’s not met by this Sunday, all promised monies thus far (and as of this writing it’s only $800 short of its goal!) cannot be collected—and the exhibition will not take place. While Deborah Sussman’s talent and influence have finally been recognized in a few recent museum shows—The Autry’s California’s Designing Women: 1896 – 1986, LACMA’s Living in a Modern Way, A+D Museum’s Eames Words—her legacy deserves a spotlight of its very own. For more, check out the video snippet below or this quick read on KCRW’s “DnA” show by Frances Anderton, including short essays by Barbara and design writer Alissa Walker. Donate here now. THANK YOU. -Andy+Rose
Posted In: Advertising, Art, Design, Event, Graphics, Los Angeles, Marketing, 1984 Olympics, Alyssa Walker, Barbara Bestor, Catherine Gudis, Deborah Sussman, DnA, Eames, Frances Anderton, graphics, KCRW, Kickstarter, NPR, Olympics, Shannon Starkey, Thomas Kracauer, Woodbury University, WUHO Gallery