(Erik Piepenburg’s article appeared in The New York Times, 10/13; via Pam Green.)
If you’ve walked just about anywhere in New York City, you’ve seen the work of Paula Scher. A partner in the design firm Pentagram, Ms. Scher is the creative hand behind some of the most recognizable graphic identities that dot the city, including logos (Citibank, Shake Shack), poster art (Public Theater) and organizational branding (New York City Ballet).
Southern California is getting its own Paula Scher moment courtesy of the Pasadena Playhouse, which is presenting a revival of “Our Town” in a production with Deaf West Theater.
Ms. Scher’s poster for “Our Town” takes a minimalist approach, mirroring the ordered storytelling of Thornton Wilder’s 1938 play about life and death in a small New Hampshire town. Drawing on the show’s typical bare-bones staging, the image features a sturdy-looking, mauve chair that floats in the center of a vivid teal background. The play’s title and the theater’s name are rendered in a font, created for the playhouse, that references the rounded contours prevalent in Pasadena’s architecture.
The poster is part of the theater’s rebranding campaign as it celebrates its 100th birthday.
“The playhouse was a good theater in its day, the place where everybody in L.A. went to see works of intelligence with less commercial expectation that still managed to entertain,” Ms. Scher said. “It fell on some dodgy times. Our job here is to make people recognize it again.”