York University’s Graduate Program in Design is presenting "Grown-Up Game Boy", a public talk by Chicago designer Rick Valicenti, on Wednesday, March 18 at Toronto’s historic Arts & Letters Club.
Valicenti is the founder and design director of the cutting-edge company Thirst/Chicago. At the age of 57, he sees himself as a "grown-up game boy" who continues to approach the design process with the joy of a student, tempered by 30 years of professional experience but still coming to each project with fresh eyes. In his illustrated talk, he will share his insights and his youthful enthusiasm for a wide variety of projects.
Right: Valicenti designed a poster for his talk, which was silk-screened by fourth-year visual arts students Ellen-Elizabeth Paonessa (right) and Areej Kaoud, in the Faculty of Fine Arts’ print media studio.
In 2006, Valicenti was awarded the American Institute of Graphic Artists Medal – the highest honour in the profession – for his sustained contribution to design excellence and development of the profession. His works are included in the permanent collection of the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum and the 2006 Triennial, Design Life Now. A monograph on Thirst’s work, edited by Valicenti, titled Emotion as Promotion, was published by the Monacelli Press in 2004. A preview is available on the book’s Web site.
Thirst/Chicago is a communication design firm devoted to art, function and real human presence. From posters to Web sites, corporate branding and interior and exterior spacemaking, the agency’s projects embrace new technologies and create dynamic unions of imagery and inspiration. The company’s strategic and creative versatility has attracted an impressive roster of clients including the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Motorola and the Harvard University Graduate School of Design.
Organized by York design Professors Michael Longford and Paul Sych, Valicenti’s talk is a highlight of the Master in Design Colloquium Seminar Series. A longtime associate of Valicenti, Sych saw an opportunity to introduce students to a design icon who continues to explore and shape design both commercially and personally.
"Rick is a leader in the discourse and pursuit of the elusive ideals of intelligence, fashion and real human presence within today’s world of communication,” says Sych. “We’re honoured that he’s taking the time to visit and share his experience with our students and members of the community at large.”
Valicenti designed a poster for his talk, which was silk-screened by fourth-year visual arts students Ellen-Elizabeth Paonessa and Areej Kaoud, in the Faculty of Fine Arts’ print media studio. A limited number of the posters will be available for a silent auction at the event. The funds raised will be donated in support of the graduating student exhibition of the York/Sheridan Joint Program in Design, held at the end of the academic year.
Valicenti will be welcomed with a reception at the Arts & Letters Club starting at 6:30 pm. His talk beings at 7:30 pm. Admission is $20 at the door, but free for all students.
This event is sponsored by the Department of Design, Faculty of Fine Arts and Office of the Vice-President Academic & Provost.