The Alvin Lustig Archive would not have been possible without the extreme generosity, guidance and vision of Elaine Lustig Cohen, who shared her personal archives with us and allowed this project to become a reality. For all her inspiration, support and kindness, we thank her dearly.
We'd also like to thank Steven Heller for his expertise on Alvin Lustig (amongst many other items) and for his permission to reprint the numerous articles he has written for our section introductions. Steve's expertise, insight and articles were instrumental in the site's achievements. Steven Heller is currently working on the Alvin Lustig biography.
Elaine Lustig Cohen
From 1948 to 1955, Elaine Lustig Cohen was married to and collaborated with Alvin Lustig. She managed Lustig's studio in California and New York, serving as secretary, production assistant and draftsperson. After Lustig's death in 1955, Elaine closed his studio and established her own design practice and became one of the few successful women in graphic design. Her book covers, books, catalogues, stationery, architectural signage, and other work for clients such as the Whitney Museum, the Museum of Modern Art, Meridian Books, and Philip Johnson reveal Elaine's important place in modern design history.
As her professional practice came to an end, Elaine and her second husband, Arthur Cohen, established Ex Libris in 1973. This antiquarian bookstore, specializing in printed books and ephemera of the European Avant-Garde, became an extraordinary resource for 20th century design history. Elaine limited her design work to Ex Libris catalogs and focused her creative efforts on painting, photography, and collage which she still continues today from her New York City home. Her work has been exhibited worldwide, including the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, Mary Boone Gallery, and Julie Saul Gallery in New York. In 1996, Elaine and Ellen Lupton curated "The Avant-Garde Letterhead" exhibit at the Cooper Hewitt, coinciding with their book "Letters from the Avant-Garde: Modern Graphic Design", published by Princeton Architectural Press.
Steven Heller, a senior art director of the New York Times, is the co-chair of the MFA Designer As Author Program at the School of Visual Arts and co-founder of the MFA in Design Criticism. He is the author of many books on design and popular culture and editor of AIGA VOICE.
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