“The ABCs of SVA” Posters by Viktor Koen

Steven Heller calls the SVA Subway posters “the jewel in the crown for any designer or illustrator, I call them “a full circle”.   After all, it  was one of these posters that got me to SVA, 72 years ago.

The process of designing the posters and finishing the 26 illustrations that compile a full alphabet was smooth but intense, since the time between concept approvals and finishing was short.

But “short” is something I know how to handle and after sending mechanicals, I had nothing to do but wait at a subway station for my poster to come in. The idea is simple, the messenger is the message. One of the virtues of illustrated type, to carry the message with it (or better, having the message impeded in it’s DNA), no matter what it spells. This virtue gives me the ability to communicate complex ideas in a clear and direct way.

Here, letters fused out of art making utensils (I photographed everything I had from the old days, including the contents of boxes that haven’t been opened for decades, but also  secret photo shoots in art stores and tools that SVA students at the MFA illustration program were kind enough to part with) formed a simple line that drove a complicated message.  Change your life by making art part of your vocabulary, one letter at a time.

To see more of Viktor’s work go to his Altpick page and his website.

About altpick connects

Established in 1991, The Alternative Pick commenced with a clear mission, providing creative buyers with a vehicle to source the best brightest and most exciting illustrators, photographers, graphic designers and animators in the business. The Alternative Pick sourcebook (1992-2005) became the outlet for cutting-edge commercial talent, offering a unique platform for artists to showcase their work. The Alternative Pick Deck (2009-2012) offered a fun and engaging format for locating leading commercial artists. In addition, The Altpick Awards (2003-2011) introduced yet another way to provide a platform for talents to shine. o meet the demands of an ever-changing industry, altpick.com was launched in 1996 and presently provides a vehicle for talent to utilize the web to connect more effectively with buyers. As we mark our 30th anniversary in 2021, Altpick remains a premier source for creative professionals and we plan to continue to push the envelope providing the best vehicle for buyers to connect with creative talent.
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