For Armin Hofmann, lecturing at design schools and working as a freelance graphic artist went hand in hand: his activities as an educator invariably provided inspiration for his own work. Rather than a doctrinaire approach, Hofmann’s teaching style centered on the students’ engagement with their own experiences and abilities, so enabling them to hone their individual perception of design issues.
During his 44 years as an educator at various institutions across the world, including the Basel School of Design in Switzerland and the Yale University School of Art, Hofmann accumulated a treasure-trove of experiences and findings on the subject of color. Following his retirement, the legendary Swiss graphic designer and educator produced 20 silkscreen portfolios, each containing 12 compositions. One of these portfolios and 16 studies in print constitute the majority of Farbe / Color. Hofmann has described his silkscreens as an account of his pedagogical activities.
Hofmann has had immeasurable influence on generations of designers and shaped the world’s perception and understanding of color and design. Last year the Swiss Confederation paid tribute to Armin’s lifetime work and awarded him with the Grand Prix Design. Armin Hoffmann is 93 years old and lives in Switzerland. Watch a video of the awards.
A discussion and presentation by the Swiss designer Steff Geissbühler, a former student of Hofmann’s, will elaborate on how this education applies to commissioned work and personally in his portfolio of design for Fortune 500 companies while working in New York City.
6:00 pm opening reception
10:30 am lecture, ‘Color and the Brain’ by Dr. M.A. Greenstein
1:00 pm presentation and discussion, ‘When in Doubt, Make it Red’ by Steff Geissbühler
Saturday program supported by Otis College of Design/California Institute of the Arts.
Photo: Myleen Hollero